One month before their exams, 13 Kashmiri students of Rohtak Institute of Engineering and Management (RIEM) have been expelled from the institute as the scholarship that they were entitled to under the Prime Ministers Special Scholarship Scheme (PMSSS) has not reached the institute.
Nasir Sofi, one of the expelled students, told Hindustan Times that they were promised fulltime scholarship under PMSSS at the time of admission in 2013.
“Now that we have completed two semesters the college management has expelled us from the institution. Also, the management asked us to pay the fee if we want to continue our study,” Sofi said.
The students said that they were eligible for the scholarship, as they secured more than 60% marks in class 12 (with Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics) against required 50% to be eligible for the scholarship. Moreover, one of the expelled student Towseef Ahmad had secured 68% marks.
The scholarship, which is exclusively meant for students of Jammu and Kashmir, covers tuition and hostel fees, cost of books and other incidental expenses of the students, who, after passing Class 12 or an equivalent examination, can secure admission in government-recognized colleges or institutions located outside Jammu and Kashmir.
“The college expelled us from the hostel on March 10 after which the 13 of us hired three rooms in Prem Nagar area (Rohtak),” said another student Zahoor Ahmad Mir. “Our home town had faced two floods in past one year, how can we shell out the fees being demanded,” he added. The students said that they had taken the admission after a Srinagar-based consultancy Rigth Education had promised them free education in a Rohtak-based college.
When contacted, Mohmmad Ashraf of Right To Education said, “Yes, the students have told me that they have been expelled from the college. I am trying my best to get them admitted back but the director of the college is not taking my calls.”
“We have expelled the students as the funds have not been provided to the college under the PMSSS,” said Dr Kishor Chawala, director of the college. “Our college is self-financed. The ministry of human resource and development (HRD) has not provided any funds. Though the scholarship of 10 other students has reached, the amount of the remaining 13 is pending,” he claimed.