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Proposal to raise tuition fee in IITs deferred

Proposal to raise tuition fee in IITs deferred
A proposal to raise the tuition fee in the prestigious Indian Institute of Technology (IITs) was deferred today with the government deciding the set up a committee to examine the matter as well as ways to enhance student loans and increase scholarships for needy students.

The proposal was discussed at the IIT council meeting in Mumbai where a decision was taken to admit foreign students with preference being given to students from SAARC and African countries.

The issue of raising the tuition fee was taken up in the light of a proposed new funding mechanism where the running expenses for running the IITs could be recovered from the students, said sources.

The decision if implementation could raise the fee appreciably from Rs 90,000 at present to close to Rs 2.5 lakh.

IIT Council is the apex policy making body of the IITs and is chaired by HRD Minister Smriti Irani. Sources said the Minister was not inclined on taking any decisions without further examination.

A government statement released after the meeting, however, remained silent on the issue of fee hike.

It merely said the "council proposed a funding mechanism for IITs that would appreciably enhance Government investments for building world class infrastructure".

Non-planned expenditure (running expenses) like labs, equipment library and salary is proposed to be recovered from tuition fee, the model of which has already been approved by the NIT council which had met last week.

The government statement though said the committee would "examine ways to enhance loans to students, and maintain and enhance scholarships to needy students, especially those from the SC/ST/economically weaker sections," remaining silent on the possible fee hike.

The council suggested that freeships should be provided for all physically handicapped students, it added.

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The council also decided to set up a "peer-group assisted learning" system to handhold students to meet the challenges of rigorous and focused educational system.

Under the initiative, bright senior students would handhold the weak students and the Centre would support and fund this initiative.

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