Dakshina Kannada District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum has asked the St. Aloysius Institute of Science to refund Rs. 1.7 lakh with interest taken from a student for awarding an M.Sc. degree instead of M.S. in Software Technology.
In a recent order, the Forum asked the college to pay the amount with interest at 12 per cent per annum from the date of receipt of the amount till the date of payment besides paying him Rs. 2,000 as litigation expenses.
Ajay Kumar R. of Surathkal complained that he had joined College for the academic years 2010-2012 with the expectation of receiving M.S. Degree in Software Technology as was advertised. But he received M.Sc. degree in the subject.
The College maintained that he had applied and joined for M.Sc (Software Technology).
It also contended that it had applied for the change of nomenclature of the course as M.S. (Software Technology) but Mangalore University had not approved it.
Asserting that the negligence of the institution was proved beyond doubt, the Forum said “we are very surprised” that it had not obtained prior approvals required before advertising the course in the media, official website and college prospectus or elsewhere. Such publications would lure students to join the course and pay the fees as demanded by the institution for a bright future.
The Forum, headed by Asha Shetty, refused to accept the contention of the college that M.S. and M.Sc. courses were one and the same. It said M.S. course is a technical course for two years recognised AICTE and the students who have completed B.E. or B. Tech are entitled for the said course.
M.Sc. could be opted by those possessing the B.Sc. or equivalent degree.
It pointed out that the “because of unfair trade practice, deficiency of service committed by the Opposite Party institution” the complainant was put through difficulty because he could neither repeat the P.G. course once again nor use the degree for employment as an equivalent to M.S software technology.
The Forum has held that the Principal of the college, its Rector and The Provincial of the Karnatak Jesuit Province were jointly responsible for refunding the damages. The Forum had ruled against the college last year in the case of 17 complaints from students of the M.S. course.