Asked to pay their annual fee by August 5 or face a hefty late fine, students of Delhi Technological University are unhappy with the university’s recent fee notice.
The university administration uploaded the fee notice for the academic year 2020-2021 on the DTU website this week. According to the schedule, B.Tech students have to pay their annual fee of Rs 1,90,000 by August 5, while BBA and BA students have to pay their annual fee of Rs 90,000 by the same date.
What has particularly irked students is the punitive clause in the notice. Those who pay the fee after August 5 and by August 13 have to pay a fine of Rs. 2,000; those who pay after that but before August 20 have to pay a fine of Rs 5,000; and those who submit the fee even later and by August 27 face a fine of Rs 10,000. Students who fail to pay by then may have their names struck off university rolls.
A third-year B.Tech student, whose father works as a driver for tourists, said his family has been badly hit by the shrinking of economic opportunities since the pandemic and said the university should consider fee concession this time.
“It is not possible for our parents to pay the complete college fee in these hard times. They are finding it really difficult to fulfil basic household needs, and the college fee amount is an additional burden on them. Given that the college has been physically closed for the last five months and the next session is going to begin with online classes, the university should consider at least a 50% fee concession for this academic year or allow us to pay only the tuition fee in installments,” he said.
The annual fee to be paid by DTU students for every year of their study is stated by the university in its prospectus at the time of admission.
However, students who have started an online campaign against fee collection have said the university could consider not collecting fees under certain heads given that they will be engaging in remote learning.
“Fees are collected for co-curricular activities, extra-curricular activities, for conferences, seminars, the library, development, and so on. Even a big part of our tuition fees is for laboratory expenses, while with online learning we are just having online classes with our teachers and e-labs. We should not be charged for things we are not using at this time, especially when so many families are financially affected. On top of that, there’s a huge late fee as if this is a normal time,” said another B.Tech student.
However, DTU Public Relations Officer Anoop Lather said these components cannot be shaved off from the annual fee.
“All expenses stand as they were when the university was open. Salaries need to be paid, maintenance needs to be paid for, payments need to be done for software for which we have subscriptions. We have provisions for students with financial problems, and every year we provide crores of rupees to support them and have provided exemptions in the past. Students who have problems in paying can put in an application for exemption, which can be considered,” he said.
Similar concerns have also been voiced by students of GGSIPU, where students of MCA, BBA, BA (J&MC) and BCA had been asked to pay their entire annual fees by Friday, with a late fine of Rs 20 per day, as well as students of NSUT who also had to pay their annual fees by Friday.
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