The Cabinet meeting on Wednesday morning is likely to be stormy over modifications made in the government support for funding of tuition fees for socially and economically backward persons as Congress leaders and student groups have opposed the move to reduce aid.
The decisions largely pertaining to the NCP-held portfolios is being seen as politically harmful for the Congress,which draws much support from these sections of the society.
In the last Cabinet meeting,a decision was passed to modify the qualifications of eligibility to avail oneself of the free tuition fee,scholarships and examination fees for professional courses.
As per the decision,only those students whose family annual income is less than Rs 2 lakh per annum will be eligible.
Some Congress leaders have opening expressed their displeasure over the decision and will be raising their objection in the cabinet meeting when the minutes of the previous meeting come up for confirmation. Student groups had also staged protests outside the Mantralaya on Monday.
How can a state with a Rs 41,000-crore budget explain not having funds to support education of the weakest section of the society? The departments which handle these schemes have budgets over Rs 4,000 crore; why should there be a problem in spending this amount on education, said a leader.
Meanwhile,Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee president Manikrao Thakre and Member of Parliament Dr Bhalchandra Mungekar said the MPCC will petition the chief minister to roll back such a decision and revert to the 2006 categories for aid eligibility.