Karnataka government has decided to hike the annual fee for engineering students in the government quota in private colleges by Rs 2,500 - from Rs 30,000 to Rs 32,500.
Higher Education Minister V S Acharya told reporters here today the government quota in private engineering colleges would be brought down to 45 per cent from the existing 50 per cent.
However, from the government quota, private engineering colleges would have enrol an additional five per cent seats earmarked for poor students with family annual income of Rs two lakh, which effectively meant that the government quota would be 50 per cent of the seats.
Mr. Acharya said he expected most of the private engineering colleges to agree to the formula he announced today.
Those who do not accept the increase in fee by Rs 2,500 and reducing government quota by five per cent, would be governed by the recommendations of the Justice B Padmaraj-headed fee regulatory committee, he said.
The government’s decision follows demands by private engineering colleges to raise the fee for students coming under the government quota and enhancing the number of seats for themselves.
Citing enhanced wage bill following hike in salary of teaching staff and general expenses, the private colleges had sought revising the annual fee to Rs 50,000 to Rs 60,000 but Mr. Acharya insisted that fee increase could not be done to that extent.
The other argument by the private engineering colleges was that the demand for engineering seats had decreased over the years. In the previous academic year, as many as 8,067 seats could not be filled in Karnataka, which has 184 engineering colleges.
In Karnataka, the government conducts Common Entrance Test (CET) for enrolment in professional courses, while the Consortium of Medical Engineering Dental Colleges Karnataka (COMED—K), the association of managements of private colleges, hold their own.
Since 2006, the Government and the private colleges had adopted a “consensual route” on fee structure and seat matrix after the latter felt that a relevant legislation enacted that year was “stringent” and difficult to implement.