Govt may recast professional educational institutions Act

The State government is likely to amend the controversial Karnataka Professional Educational Institutions (Regulation of Admission and Determination of Fee) Act 2006 and implement it this year in the wake of engineering colleges refusing to sign the consensual agreement.

Last December, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah had announced that the Act would be kept in abeyance this year following widespread protests against its implementation. The Higher Education Department sources said a proposal to amend the Act was before the law department. “We will have to wait for an opinion from the law department,” the official said.

Karnataka Unaided Private Engineering Colleges Association (KUPECA) Secretary M K Panduranga Setty said the association would not sign the consensual agreement if the government did not implement the 2006 Act.

In a meeting with government officials on February 14, medical institutions expressed willingness to sign the agreement but engineering colleges refused, as the government asked them to continue with the existing fee structure. “Our association unanimously decided not to sign the agreement with the existing fee structure,” Setty said.

On February 17, KUPECA wrote a letter to the government conveying the same and asking it to implement the Act. “I heard that they are planning to bring in amendments to the Act, but they would have to comply with the Supreme Court directions,” Setty said.

They have also urged the government to allow the Admission Overseeing Committee and Fee Regulatory Committee to function. “Since they have already appointed chairpersons to the committees and we have submitted our audit reports to, the government has to fix fees for every institution as per the regulations of the 2006 Act,” he said.

The government had earlier appointed Justice V Jagannathan as Chairperson of Admission Overseeing Committee and Justice Ajit J Gunjal as Chairperson of Fee Regulatory Committee.

The colleges were asked to submit their audit reports to the fee regulatory committee so that fees for every individual college could be fixed based on the cost incurred by the institution.

However, it was decided to keep the Act in abeyance soon after and no decision on the fee was taken.

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