Parents of children studying in Class IX of the Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education (MSBSHSE) school will now need to shell out double the money to buy the books this year. Board officials attribute this price rise to the improved quality of the books printed by Balbharati.
Shop owners say the the prices remained unchanged for many years and this is the reason why parents are shocked at the price rise this year. Parents are shocked by the price rise but hardly anything can be done about it. Subsidies for these books have been removed and the number of pages,too,has increased, said Vijay Kinger,owner of Natraj Book Shoppe.
An Algebra book,which cost Rs 31 earlier,is now priced at Rs 66. Similarly,the price of an English book has increased from Rs 31 to Rs 64. Hindi books price has been hiked from Rs 17 to Rs 67. For Marathi books,it has gone up from Rs 25 to Rs 60, said Ravi Bansode,another shop owner.
Sarjerao Jadhav,chairman,MSBSHSE and director of Balbharati,said,Prices have been increased but the quality of the books has also improved. The books have more pages and better illustrations. The price of everything,from paper to fuel,is going up these days. In such a scenario,we cannot help but increase the prices of our books.
However,parents are unhappy. Dinesh Bapat,a parent,said,The quality of books has improved,but increasing the prices of by almost double is unfair. The board should realise that most of the students are from modest families and such a sharp increase in prices would make it difficult for many to procure them.