IIM-A board to meet to decide on fee hike

April 23rd, 2008 - 1:39 am ICT by admin  

Ahmedabad, April 22 (IANS) The board of governors of the Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad (IIM-A), headed by industrialist Vijaypat Singhania, is to meet Saturday to decide on the controversial fee hike. The meeting comes in the wake of the R.C. Bhargava-headed Review Committee in its interim report asking the IIMs to freeze the annual fee at Rs.300,000 or less. The committee is also expected to visit IIM-A Friday for a day.

With the Bhargava Review Committee suggesting freeze on fees until it submits its final report, rumours and speculations have started making rounds of IIM campuses.

The talk all over the city Tuesday was that the IIM-A would roll back the fee hike it announced recently for the 2008-10 session of the two-year Post-Graduate Programme (PGP) in Management.

A top IIM-A source told IANS here that the fee revision carried out by the IIM-A board was only after thorough deliberations. How could the ministry of human resource development ask the IIMs to roll back the fee? IIM-A is an autonomous board and the fee hike came about after due diligence, the source said.

The committee, under the chairmanship of R.C. Bhargava, had only sent a proposal for a freeze to the ministry. It had not asked the IIMs to roll back the fee hike, the source said.

In its interim report April 4, the Bhargava panel recommended that the ministry ask all the IIMs to defer any increase in fee and keep it at the level of December 2007. This was stated by Minister of State for Human Resource Development D. Purandeswari in the Rajya Sabha Monday.

Even the question of other backward classes admission, minus the creamy layer, is still under discussion and no decision has been arrived at so far, the source said. The Supreme Court had recently ruled in favour of 27 percent quota for the OBC students belonging to the non-creamy category, which has led to an impasse in admissions that were to begin April 11.

IIM-A board had announced the steepest hike in annual fee - raising it from Rs.200,000 to Rs.550,000 for the first year, and to Rs.600,000 for the second year.

To silence critics, the IIM-A board had also announced a free education scheme for students whose parents’ annual income was less than Rs.100,000 a year. These students would get free education and not have to pay any tuition fee or incur any other expenses such as buying books. They would have access to the library free of cost and would not have to pay for accommodation, the board said.

“Fee waiver is not based on merit. It is need based scholarship,” Samir Barua, IIM-A director, said.

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