Maharashtra: Private medical college fees to see up to 13% hike

MUMBAI: Fees at private medical colleges in the state will see up to a 13% hike in the next academic session, with an exception of one. Last year, many colleges saw a hike of over 15-25%. Ashwini Rural Medical College (Solapur) registered the highest fee hike of 17.5% this year.

At city-based KJ Somaiya Medical College, fees went up from Rs 9.25 lakh to Rs 10.25 lakh a year — a rise of almost 11%. Fees at Kashibai Navale Medical College (Pune) for 2020-21 are Rs 13.4 lakh, the highest so far. With the inclusion of fees of NRI and institutional quota students in college’s income, Fee Regulating Authority (FRA) capped the fee hike to less than 15% in most private colleges. In fact, fees at Nashik’s SMBT Institute of Medical Sciences dropped from Rs 10.25 lakh to Rs 9.7 lakh.

Fee fixation of Vedantaa Institute of Medical Sciences (Palghar) and Prakash Institute of Medial Sciences & Research (Sangli) is deferred. Vedantaa, established under Companies Act, 2013, had the highest fees of Rs 14.5 lakh last year. An FRA official said there have been complaints over steep fees charged by Prakash Institute. “Parents claimed it had failed to provide necessary infrastructure despite charging higher fees,” said the official.

Though the hikes are not as bad as last year, parents claimed they should be controlled. “Fees at private medical colleges were not so high till 2016. Once admissions were centralised, most colleges hiked fees. With increased reservations, it is extremely difficult for students from open category to get a seat in government colleges. With unaffordable fees, students are deprived of seats in private colleges. Fees have gone up by almost three times in four years,” said Sudha Shenoy, a representative of a medical parents’ group