Private university asked to refund excess fees charged from 2 ex-students, fined Rs 1 crore

The Himachal Pradesh Private Educational Institutions Regulatory Commission (HPPEIRC) has directed the Maharishi Markandeshwar University (MMU) to refund the excess fee charged by it from two former MBBS students and also slapped a fine of Rs 1 crore on the university.

The education regulator in the hill state directed the MMU and Maharishi Markandeshwar Medical College and Hospital (MMMCH), Kumarhatti (Solan) on Monday to refund the excess tuition fee, university charges and hostel charges amounting to more than Rs 36 lakh to Dr Nivedita Rao and Dr Yamini and imposed a fine of Rs 1 crore on the university for charging the excess fees.

It passed an order to this effect on complaints from the two medical practitioners, who were MBBS students of the university's 2013-14 batch, directing the respondent university and college to refund Rs 14,45,500 to Dr Nivedita and Rs 22,45,500 to Dr Yamini.

A copy of the order was uploaded on the HPPEIRC website on Monday evening.

Observing that excess fees and other charges were recovered from 1,200 students of eight batches (2013-14 to 2020-21), the commission calculated the excess charges at Rs 103.96 crore on the basis of the documents submitted by the university and government agencies, and said the students can approach the college for a refund of the same.

The two-member bench of the commission, headed by chairman Major General (retired) Atul Kaushik, said the order will come into force with immediate effect and directed the respondents to deposit Rs 1 crore as penalty in the commission's bank account within three months.

According to the records and evidence placed before the commission, the university charged tuition fee for six-and-a-half years for the four-and-a-half-year MBBS course as well as hostel, university and developmental charges for five years, without an approval from the state government.

According to the fee structure for the 2017-18 to 2020-21 sessions placed before the commission, the tuition fee would be charged annually in two equal instalments and the fee towards the building fund, infrastructure fund and development fund would not be charged from the students in compliance with court orders.

The commission had earlier issued an order against the university and the college on June 9, 2022, imposing a penalty of Rs 45 lakh, and directed them to refund the excess fees or charges amounting to Rs 103.96 crore to the MBBS students.

The university moved the high court against the commission's order. The court remanded the case back to the commission, observing that the order was signed only by the chairman, while the other member had refused to sign it and therefore, there was no quorum.

Post a Comment

Previous Post Next Post