Only 50% students pay annual fees at Delhi’s tech varsity by deadline
Of over 7,000 students at the Delhi Technological University, around 50% have paid the annual fee for the upcoming session, university officials said. This varsity had given them less than a week’s time to pay the nearly Rs 2 lakh fee, students said, with August 5 being the last date for fee submission. After that, the varsity had warned of a late fee ranging from Rs 2,000-10,000 and after August 27, their names may be struck off the rolls.
A handful of students also protested outside the university on Friday demanding that they be allowed to pay the fee in instalments as many families were in financial distress. BTech students have to pay their annual fee of Rs 1, 90,000 by August 5 while BBA and BA students have to pay Rs 90,000.
Anoop Lather, the university’s public relations officer, “As per data received by our accounts and computer department, around 50% of students have already paid their fee by Thursday. Keeping the Covid-19 situation in mind, we have granted fee concessions to around 500 students like we did last year. Apart from that, we have allowed students to submit the loan application details for late fee exception if their loan hasn’t been processed yet.” Lather, however, said there has been no extension of the last date so far.
In a July 24 directive that was uploaded on the university’s website on July 28, the university had mentioned that students who pay the fee after the August 5 deadline, between August 6 and 13, will have to pay a fine of Rs 2,000. Those who pay between August 13 and 20 will have to pay a fine of Rs 5,000; and those who submit the fee between August 20 and 27 will have to pay a fine of Rs 10,000. Students who fail to pay by then may have their names struck off university rolls.
Those who fail to pay their fee by August 27, may have their names struck off the rolls.
While the university said it has allowed some concessions, students believe that these may not benefit all. Sumit, 18, said his father, who works as a plumber, had found no work during the Covid-19 lockdown for four months.
“We have been trying to avail of bank loans to pay the fee but that too wasn’t possible as we live in a rented accommodation. We have asked our relatives for some help but they don’t have the means to help us right now,” said the Gokalpuri resident, who is a second-year engineering student. He had applied for a scholarship but the money hasn’t come through, Sumit said.
Manish Kumar, 18, a second-year engineering student from Bihar was already reeling under the stress of his father losing all crops to floods in Saharsa district when the fee notification came on July 28.
“Even though I have a scholarship and have to pay a lesser amount than the others, I have written to the university saying that I won’t be able to pay the fee before September,” Kumar said. The first-generation learner lives with his relatives in Delhi and is looking to give tuitions to earn some money, but the Covid-19 health crisis has made it difficult.
“Students were barely given a week to arrange such a huge sum of money. Many of my classmates have not been able to arrange the money,” he said.
Vice-chancellor Yogesh Singh said, “Students in distress or from marginalised backgrounds should write to the registrar or dean and we will find a way to resolve issues on a case-to-case basis.”
Students are also worried about how the fee issue would impact their stay in college. Aparnendu Ram Tripathi, president of ABVP-DTU unit, said, “There has been indirect communication that those wanting to sit for college placement must pay their fee. Students unable to do so have been asked to write to the vice chancellor. This has caused additional stress to students during a pandemic.” Lather responded to this saying, “This isn’t a new development. All dues must be cleared before events like examinations or placements. For needy students, there are committees in place to check their applications over fee concession and take decisions accordingly.”
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