Private engineering schools in Tamil Nadu face acute financial crisis, 8 closures

In the face of the financial crisis, the Consortium of Engineerinf Colleges in Tamil Nadu requested the state to increase the fees

Chenai: The Consortium of Self-Funded Vocational Colleges of Arts and Sciences of Tamil Nadu, which is a wider coalition of engineering colleges in the state, will meet with the state’s Minister of Higher Education, K. Ponmudi, to ask him for a nominal fee increase.

P. Selvaraj, secretary of the consortium, told IANS that the state’s self-funded engineering colleges are in acute financial crisis and eight state engineering colleges have been closed this year.

It should be noted that K. Ponmudi had ruled out that Tamil Nadu would accept the new fee hike for engineering courses announced by the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE). Ponmudi said in a statement on Friday: “Engineering fees will not be increased in Tamil Nadu. The old fees will remain in effect.”

Meanwhile, Selvaraj said he would not accept AICTE’s fee hike as it was very high, but added that he would meet with the state’s Minister of Higher Education to ask the government a nominal fee increase.

The consortium secretary said: “AICTE’s fee hike is too high and we don’t accept it, but we need a nominal hike for our survival. College consortium representatives will meet soon with K. Ponmudi and him would ask for a nominal fee hike for engineering courses as we are facing an acute financial crisis and eight engineering colleges in the self-funded sector of the state have already closed this year due to the financial crisis.”

It can be noted that the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) has recommended a hike in fees for engineering colleges in the self-financing sector.

According to the recommendation of AICTE, a minimum fee of Rs 79,600 per year and a maximum fee of Rs 1.89 lakh per year can be charged for an undergraduate engineering course. In Tamil Nadu, in most engineering colleges, fees are around Rs 55,000 per year, almost half of the fees prescribed by AICTE.

The minister said the state government would not allow private engineering schools to scam students considering the increased AICTE fee structure.

The minister’s statement came as a major shock to several engineering colleges in urban areas of the state who expected to raise fees in line with AICTE recommendations.

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