MBBS course: No longer affordable for middleclass students

The proposed hike in the fee for MBBS course has left many MBBS aspirants, student union organization and the medical fraternity angry. Recently, the Admission and Fee Regulatory Commission (AFRC) in its report to the government proposed steep hike in the fee for the medical stream after due consultations with various medical colleges in the state.

The AFRC has reportedly given its nod for the common fee norm and proposed fee hike between Rs. 3.5 lakh and Rs. 4 lakh for one year course which will be in effect for the next three years. The commission has merged both the convener and management quota and a common fee has been fixed. The fee structure varies depending on the infrastructure, facilities etc in the colleges. "The proposed hike must be withdrawn. The way commission increased the way limits the medical education to the upper section of the society, not all can afford the lakh of rupees," Laxmaiah, Secretary, Student Federation of India (SFI) said and added that they strongly oppose the move. The common fee will be applicable to all the convener and management quota seats that counts 85 per cent and 15 per cent is meant for the owner's quota. The students who have been paying Rs. 60,000 per annum will now have to cough up anywhere between Rs. 3.5 lakh and Rs. 4 lakh under category I. For the category II students, the fee has been double and the students have to pay Rs. 4 lakh per annum, while students who secure seat under management quota have to pay Rs. 4 lakh.

"Medicine will be far of reach for the poor students if this is approved. We are against the proposed hike in the medical fee," says Kranthi Chaitanya, President, JUDA. "Like the engineering education, the medical education is being commercialised. Owner's quota seats are beyond the reach of a middle class person as they charge lakhs. Now with propose to hike the fee, students opting for the MBBS may come down," says Nimisha, a medico, Mamtha Medical College. For Rajesh a MBBS aspirant, medical education may become a distant dream for him if the proposed hike is approved by the governor ESL Narmsimhan. "I belong to a middle class. I have been striving hard to secured a good rank in Eamcet, if the proposed hike is approved I may not able to pursue my career in medicine," says Rajesh. "If the new government continues fee reimbursement, a section of SC/ST and backward caste students may benefit. But what about the students belonging to other categories," questioned Vikranth Reddy, an MBBS aspirant.
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