With less than a fortnight left for entrance tests to various competitive examinations, uncertainty still remains over the fee structure for medical, dental, and engineering courses.
The undergraduate National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) is scheduled on May 5 and the Common Entrance Test is on April 29 and 30. With the code of conduct having been in place for the Lok Sabha elections, the process of fixing the fees has been delayed. A meeting between private college managements and the State government is yet to take place.
Private college managements in all three courses are demanding that fees be increased for both government quota and institutional quota seats, but the State government is not keen to do it as there was a fee hike last year. Sources in the Medical Education Department said the State government has also received a lot of flak after the PG medical and dental fees was hiked.
The State government this year hiked the PG medical and dental fees by 15% in private colleges for both government and institutional quota, while the fees for seats in government colleges has been increased five times. “We will sign the consensual agreement with private medical colleges only in June. We are sure we will not hike the fees for government medical colleges. We also do not want to hike the private medical college fees, but we will have to have a dialogue with these colleges,” said a senior official in the department.
M.R. Jayaram, president of the Karnataka Professional Colleges Foundation, said that they would press for a hike in fees after presenting a “realistic” picture about the state of expenditure incurred by private medical colleges.
Sources in the Technical Education Department said they had completed one round of meetings prior to the elections and said there was a possibility of the fees being hiked by 10% for the 2019-20 academic year. “Engineering colleges asked for a steeper hike, but the State government had said that they could allow it to be raised by only10%,” a source in the department said.
Gururaj Desai, State secretary, Students’ Federation of India, said that they would protest if the State government hiked the fees.