Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Tuesday appealed to private self-financing medical colleges in the state to admit students by charging the pre-fixed fee of Rs 5 lakh and forgo bank guarantee. The Supreme Court in its ruling on Monday had allowed self-financing medical colleges in Kerala to charge students Rs 11 lakh as annual fee, including Rs six lakh as bank guarantee.
Vijayan ma de the appeal in the wake of mounting anxiety among students and their parents over the apex court order. “The government is with the students and their families who are suffering after the verdict,” he said adding, it would take all possible measures to ensure that meritorious students do not lose a chance to study at medical colleges. The chief minister said the government has already appealed to the banks not to insist on collateral security, margin money and third-party guarantee from medical aspirants.
He said four medical colleges under the Christian managements and Pariyaram medical college in the cooperative sector had already informed the government that they would not insist on bank guarantees. “Other private self-financing institutions should also cooperate, considering the plight of the students in this regard. It is a fact that economically backward students cannot afford to pay this fee,” Vijayan said.
The Chief Minister said the apex court had asked the state fee regulatory committee to fix the fees. Meanwhile, opposition leader in the state Assembly Ramesh Chennithala alleged that though the government had enough time to admit students at a fee of Rs five lakh, they delayed the admission process to help private college managements. A group of Youth Congress activists waved black flags at state Health Minister K K Shylaja, demanding her resignation for allegedly messing up the admission process at self- financing medical colleges.
The opposition Congress-led UDF is on a warpath for the past two weeks, demanding Shylaja’s resignation over the issue that had also rocked the recently concluded Assembly session. BJP state president Kummanom Rajasekharan slammed the state government over the issue, saying the LDF government cannot absolve itself from responsibility of the current situation.
“The lapses and inefficiency of the health minister led to the present situation”, he alleged.