Special Correspondent

Search in Chettinad, Venkateswara colleges

CHENNAI: Officials from the Directorate of Technical Education continued their crackdown on private engineering colleges for the second day on Wednesday, with a search on the premises of Sri Venkateswara Engineering College, Sriperumbudur.

Another team of officials lead by the Dean of Madras Medical College also conducted a similar check on the premises of the privately-run Chettinad Medical College at Padur near Chennai based on complaints from students.

“We received a complaint from a parent that the management had demanded a capitation fee of Rs 2 lakh for admitting a student in the Electronics and Communication Engineering course.

A team of officials conducted a surprise check on the college premises this morning and found that the college had been collecting tuition fee in excess of what has been prescribed by the government.

They, however, denied that any capitation fee was collected.,” said S. Govindarajan, DOTE Liason Officer, who headed the DOTE team.

The team also conducted a check at college’s city office at Kotturpuram and seized some documents. On Thursday, the officials will also conduct enquiries with the students who had complained against the management.

The team is still following on the evidence seized from the premises of St. Joseph’s Engineering College, Sholinganallur, where a search was conducted on Tuesday.

So far, the department has received complaints against and conducted searches in three institutions: the two mentioned above and King’s College of Technology at Namakkal.

“We are open to receiving more complaints and quickest possible action is assured under the Tamil Nadu Educational Institutions (Prohibition of Collection of Capitation Fee) Act, 1992 ,” a DOTE official said.

The DOTE team’s action follows a G.O. issued earlier this month, warning private engineering and medical colleges of stringent action if they collected capitation fee. Two separate teams were formed, one comprising DOTE officials and the other of Directorate of Medical Education officials to look into complaints from parents and students.

State Higher Education Minister K. Ponmudy had also urged parents and students to come out in the open against self-financing institutions collecting capitation fees, in violation of a government ban.

Checks in medical colleges

The government is also contemplating serious action, including recommending to the Medical Council of India to cancel recognition of medical and paramedical colleges, if these did not adhere to the fee structure prescribed by it.

Following the receipts of several complaints from parents and students, the Health Deparment had deputed a three-member team to the private medical college located at Padur, near Chennai.