New Delhi: The Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, has challenged in the Supreme Court the unilateral decision of the Union Human Resource Development Ministry to reduce the courses fee for the students from Rs. 1.5 lakhs to Rs. 30,000 a year.
In an affidavit, the institute said the board of governors had on April 3 passed a resolution that the fees and other charges payable by the post graduate programme students for the 2004-2006 batch would be the same as that of last year, that is Rs1,58,350.
Since the matter was pending in the Supreme Court, the institute would retain Rs30,000 as fees and the balance amount would be kept in a separate bank account. The institute would first try to have a dialogue with the government to project the point of view of the institute and the faculty and would also explore legal options if the dialogue failed.
It said that it was not necessary to reduce the fees to make the management education more affordable. "We strongly feel that the notification of fee reduction by the ministry is an incorrect solution to the affordability problem. It subsidises the richer students who can afford the present fee." The IIM-A said the ministry's order could not be seen in isolation but in the larger interest of many other decisions of the ministry that threatened the autonomy of the institute. It also stated that it would continue to charge the present fees for the academic year 2004-05.
The institute was responding to a notice issued to it by the Supreme Court on an application seeking to implead it as a party to a pending public interest litigation petition challenging the fee cut.