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Wednesday, September 29, 2021

SPPU hikes affiliation fees, Pune colleges say survival is tough

A few days ago, the SPPU administration issued a circular asking colleges to substantially reduce the fees collected from students under various heads.

Written by Alifiya Khan | Pune |
Updated: September 4, 2021 7:07:29 am
SPPU affiliation fee, covid-19, indian express, indian express news, pune news, current affairs, pune news today, latest pune newsSavitribai Phule Pune University. (File photo)

In a not-so-popular move, the administration of the Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU) has revised the affiliation fees for colleges recently, which has come under severe criticism from college management bodies.

A few days ago, the SPPU administration issued a circular asking colleges to substantially reduce the fees collected from students under various heads. With the Covid-19 pandemic posing severe financial difficulties to families, the university asked all affiliated colleges to slash the fees.

Though tuition fees remain untouched, the college managements claimed that the reduction in fees collected under several other heads has led to nearly 40 per cent lower fees for the current academic year.

Now, in the latest circular, the university administration declared the revised fees for affiliation of colleges, which the college managements say will pose a great challenge before them.

“It is tragic that the university administration hasn’t considered the plight of colleges, which are already reeling under severe financial losses. The fees were reduced by nearly 42 per cent due to the Covid pandemic and now the affiliation fees for colleges are increased. Earlier, courses like BVoC or BBA didn’t have a separate affiliation fee but now it’s to the tune of nearly Rs 40,000, which is per course. If colleges can’t collect full fees and affiliation fees for colleges are hiked, it’s logical it will go under severe financial loss. Even sustaining would become difficult,” said Sanjay Kharat, Principal, Modern College of Arts, Commerce and Science (Ganeshkhind Road).
The other problem the colleges are facing is poor admission rate due to the pandemic.

Sudhakar Jadhavar, president of Unaided College Association, said, “For most courses, we are seeing that the admission numbers have dropped drastically. We are seeing that Class XII students haven’t even collected their results, forget about going ahead with undergraduate course admissions. In such a scenario, if seats are vacant in courses, fees have been slashed drastically, ideally, the university should waive off or give concessions in affiliation fees. Instead, this move will seriously impact colleges, especially unaided ones,” he said.

However, the SPPU administration played down the apprehensions. “The affiliation fees have not been hiked but there is a correction. In a few cases, where affiliation fees were not being charged, they are now applicable. Like in the engineering faculty, it was charged only in the first year but not subsequently in the second or the third year, which will now be charged,” said N S Umrani, Pro Vice-Chancellor, SPPU.

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