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Know all about the cap on MBBS fee

HT explains the issue threadbare with the admission process gathering steam from next week.

punjab Updated: Jun 23, 2018 11:09 IST
Ravinder Vasudeva
Ravinder Vasudeva
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
MBBS fee,HT Explainer,Punjab department of medical education and research
The next date of hearing in the case in the high court is July 10.(HT File)

On February 6 this year, the Punjab department of medical education and research notified that private medical colleges will charge government-quota fee from 50% of students taking admission in MBBS. Previously, private colleges admitted all students under the management quota, where the fee is very high.

The two private colleges, the Adesh Institute of Medical Sciences and Research, Bathinda, and Sri Guru Ram Das Institute of Medical Sciences and Research, Amritsar, have challenged the notification in the Punjab and Haryana high court. The prospectuses of these institutions for this year also say that admission would be made ‘as per arrangement prior to the notification’. This will mean taking merit as per the rankings in the National Eligibility cum-Entrance Test (NEET), but under management quota with higher fee. HT explains the issue threadbare with the admission process gathering steam from next week.

What does the notification say?

“Of total students that private medical colleges admit each year, from 50% they will charge ‘government quota fee’ that is Rs 2.2 lakh per year. The remaining 50% can be admitted under management quota with fee fixed at ₹6.6 lakh per year per seat,” says the notification that Sanjay Kumar, previous principal secretary, medical education and research, issued on February 6. The notification also asks Baba Farid University of Health Sciences (BFUHS), Faridkot, to conduct centralised counselling.

What was the fee charged before the notification?

The two private institutions admitted all students under management quota. In the latest prospectus, Adesh has shown its fee as Rs 11.9 lakh with 10% increase each year. The Amritsar college has declared its fee at Rs 6.6 lakh. Punjab medical education minister Brahm Mohindra has said the new notification was issued to provide medical education at affordable fee for needy students. “The fee for management quota is out of reach of the masses,” he has said.

What do the institutes say?

In a representation to the state government, the two universities claim that they autonomous bodies under the Acts of Adesh University, Bathinda, and Sri Guru Ram Das University of Health Sciences, Amritsar.

The government’s February notification infringes upon the provisions of the Act of private varsities passed by the state government, they claimed. Both institutions claim that this Act empowers them to frame their own seat distribution structure and fee.

“Since Adesh is an unaided college, the Adesh University has based its fee structure on the basis of the per student cost of MBBS training in three government colleges, which receive funding from the state exchequer,” the institute claimed in its representation.

Following this, the health minister forwarded these representations to the chief minister’s office which sent these to the Legal Remembrance (LR) department. With the institutes moving court, the LR has not given any opinion, saying the matter is sub-judice. The next date of hearing is July 10.

What next for students and parents?

The medical education and research department claims that the publication of prospectus in which the institutes have claimed that they will admit all students following the previous arrangement, meaning that no student will be admitted with government quota fee, has no standing.

Former Punjab Medical Council chief Dr GS Grewal, who had raised the issue by writing an article in HT, claimed that the state government should clarify its stand at the earliest as MBBS admission start in a few days. “Should the students buy the prospectus of these private institutes or not,” he demanded.

“The high court has not stayed our notification. Let us see what happens on the next hearing. Why should we be bothered about what the prospectus of any institute says? If the court does not stay the notification, admission will be done as per the new norms. Students should wait for the next hearing,” claimed a senior official with the medical research and education department.

First Published: Jun 23, 2018 10:07 IST