The entire counselling process of the Common Entrance Test (CET) appeared to have gained clarity at the fag end of the process, with no unruly scenes being reported from the Karnataka Examinations Authority (KEA) headquarters here on Tuesday. However, the extra fee menace continued to haunt students even as the last date for reporting to colleges drew closer.
The State government seems to have had a change of plan on how to deal with this menace. With a new one-man regulatory committee to oversee professional course admissions being appointed on Monday, the previous committee’s (P. Venkataramaiah) recommendation to set ceiling for additional fee and categorise colleges under various ceilings may go.
Instead, the government may go back to its earlier stance of asking expenditure statements of colleges that wish to charge more than the fee prescribed by the government, Higher Education Department sources said. These statements will have to be submitted to the S.K. Saidapur committee.
The Venkataramaiah committee had set a ceiling of Rs. 20,000, Rs. 15,000 and Rs. 10,000 for different categories of colleges. The new committee is yet to resume office, so the next course of action will be known only after a few days.
Meanwhile, even a seventh ranker in the CET for the doctor of Pharmacy seat at the Karavali College of Pharmacy in Mangalore had to haggle for a fee reduction to get a seat.
Mufiza, who secured seventh rank in the examinations conducted by the KEA, said though the fees has been fixed by the government at Rs. 9,000, the college authorities had demanded Rs. 1 lakh for the seat when she went there on Tuesday.
Out of 30 seats in the college for the course, 15 per cent, or five seats are reserved as government quota. “We told them that we can’t afford that much. After much haggling, they put the final price at Rs. 60,000. We can’t even afford this,” she said.
Her family has filed a complaint with the Deputy Commissioner.
Acknowledging that the college had demanded Rs. 1 lakh for government quota (the cost of a management quota seat is Rs. 1.75 lakh), Narayan Swami, principal of the college, said the KEA order had not yet come to the office. “There is time till August 5 for the order to come. If KEA sends the order by then, then the fees will be reduced to their recommendation,” he said, adding that students could wait till the deadline to pay the fees.
The results of the extended second round of counselling for engineering and architecture will be out on Wednesday. As many as 8,776 engineering seats were not taken at the end of the second round of counselling, the results for which were announced on July 25.
A press release from the KEA added that as many as 422 seats have been surrendered to the government by students on Tuesday, out of which some are in medical and dental as well.