Chennai: Taking cognizance of the complaints from students regarding exorbitant fees at the private medical colleges, the State Health Department of Tamil Nadu has recently issued warning to the self-aided medical institutes.
Colleges have been warned of strict action if they demand higher fees than what has been prescribed by the Fee Fixation Committee. In fact, the colleges could get lose their approval and affiliation with the University as well, adds The Hindu.
Writing to the private medical and dental colleges of the State on November 4, 2022, the Principal Secretary to Government, Dr. P Senthilkumar stated, “I am directed to invite your attention to the letter cited and to state that the last academic year many complaints were received from candidates stating that the many self financing colleges demanding high exorbitant fees than the fees prescribed by the fee fixation committee.”
Referring to the caution notice, the Health Department further added, “If any self financing institutes refuse to admit the candidate in any rounds of MBBS/BDS counselling for the academic year 2022-2023 session and demanding higher fee than the fee prescribed by the Fee Fixation Committee, strict action will be taken against the institution by the Government.”
“All self financing institutes are advised to strictly adhere to the Direction of Hon’ble Supreme Court and High Court orders and National Medical Commission guidelines without fail,” mentioned the Health Department as it advised the colleges to follow the existing guidelines in this regard.
Medical Dialogues had earlier reported that medical and dental education in Tamil Nadu became costlier since the Fee Fixation Committee led by Justice K Venkatraman decided to increase the MBBS/BDS fees in all the private medical and dental colleges in the State.
Therefore, the fee for UG medical and dental courses for all categories increased between Rs 35, 000 and Rs 1 lakh. As per the new fee structure, announced by the Fee panel, the students getting admission in the private institutes must pay an amount ranging from Rs 4.3 lakh to Rs 4.5 lakh per year.
It is the responsibility of the Fee Fixation Committee to decide the fee structure for the self-financing medical and dental colleges. However, some of the institutes allegedly charge more than the fees prescribed by the fee committee and in this regard the Tamil Nadu Health Department had received several complaints last year.
Referring to this, now the State Health Department has warned the private medical colleges in the State of strict action if they do not adhere to the fee structure prescribed by the Fee Committee.
In fact, issuing another notice on November 5, 2022, the State DME has informed students, “It is informed that the fees for PG / UG – should be in accordance with fees prescribed by the Fee Fixation Committee. For any grievance regarding high exorbitant fees, candidates are requested to send their grievance through mail to the following E-Mail Id. 1. Under Graduate E- Mail – [email protected]. 2. Post Graduate E-Mail Id – [email protected].”
As per the latest media report by The Hindu, if the colleges demand higher than the prescribed fees, they could face withdrawal of approval and cancellation of affiliation with the University as well. Speaking to the daily, a medical education official said that the directorate had been receiving several complaints from students. This year, the Health Department has introduced a new rule of allowing candidates who have been allotted seats in private medical colleges to pay their fee to the DME. The reason for such a move is to prevent colleges from charging exorbitant fees.
Despite all these measures, the colleges are allegedly charging higher fees and while commenting on this, the medical education official said, “In one instance I had to personally intervene over phone with the college’s admission department personnel.” The official further added that there were many emails from candidates who chose to remain anonymous.
Complaints regarding exorbitant fees are received from medical, dental and paramedical students, added another official.