Staff Reporter

BHUBANESWAR: The State Gvernment has barred Rourkela-based Purusottam Institute of Engineering and Technology (PIET) from taking students from the pool of candidates prepared by Joint Entrance Examination, Orissa for 2009-10 academic year.

Industries department took the bold decision after its Policy Planning Body (PPB) found that PIET was reportedly demanding fees more than the amount mentioned in fee structure published by Joint Entrance Examination, Orissa.

The department slapped a fine of Rs. 5.40 lakh, five times of the fee demanded by the institute from Mousamibala Mallik, one candidate of JEE.

The department also fined Rs.1.08 lakh for loss of one year by the student.

The decision was said to be the first of its kinds when a private technical educational institute was taken to the task for demanding excess fees.

According to a statement released by Industries Department here on Saturday, PPB had held a hearing on the issue in presence of PIET director U. C. Patra and petitioner on May 23 last.

After going through allegations and clarifications from both students and institute authority, PPB recommended penalising the institute under Section 5 (sub-section 1) of Orissa Professional Educational (Regulation of Admission and Fixation of Fee) Act, 2007.

Prior to the counselling of JEE, Industries department had come out a series of announcements in print media asking parents and students to inform PPB if any private institute was demanding excess fees than the amount mentioned on JEE website.

It had promised to take action against the culprits.

However, the decision made engineering college association see red.

It was preparing to approach the State government for a review of the decision.