Engineering college fees likely to be hiked in Karnataka

Sources in government say they may be increased by 10%

Engineering students may have to shell out more by way of fees this academic year as the government is considering the demands of private college managements. While the Karnataka Unaided Private Engineering Colleges Association has asked for fees to be increased by around 30%, Karnataka Religious and Linguistic Minority Professional Colleges Association secretary Shafi Ahmed said that colleges under their umbrella have demanded a 25% hike.

Sources in the State government said that while they would consider increasing the fees, they would not agree to such a steep increase, especially during the pandemic. “However, as engineering college fees have not been increased over the past few academic years, we are considering increasing them by around 10% this year,” said a source.

He added that the Higher Education Department was likely to hold a meeting with college managements during the second week of September to hold negotiations so that they could sign a consensual agreement. “Engineering college managements are telling us that while medical and dental college managements were allowed to hike their fees every year, they were not allowed to do so. While their concerns are valid, we cannot afford to allow them to hike fees by 30%,” said an official.

Last academic year, CET students paid ₹65,360, while COMED-K students shelled out ₹1,43,748. However, in some other colleges, it was ₹58,808 for CET students and ₹2,01,960 for COMED-K students.

The principal of a reputed private engineering college said that engineering colleges that were already struggling with low student strength because of the mushrooming of colleges took a financial hit during the COVID-19 pandemic. “This has forced many colleges to close down. Others are shutting down branches where the demand is low. We are unable to bear the infrastructure costs and pay our teaching and non-teaching staff.”

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