Patna High Court has taken exception to several universities still charging education fee till masters courses from SC/ ST and women students against the state government’s decision announced on July 24, 2015.
The court has set a deadline of one month to reimburse the fees to students from whom the institutions had wrongly charged it. If the order is not complied with, it would amount to contempt of court and invite derecognition.
Responding to a PIL, a division bench of Chief Justice Sanjay Karol and Justice S Kumar on July 22 directed “all universities in Bihar to immediately refund the amount, if not already disbursed in terms of directions issued”, as indicated by Director, Education, Bihar, in its affidavit on June 28, 2022.
The state government had said that Rs 287 crore had been reimbursed to the students from whom education and tuition fee had been taken wrongly and more students had to be reimbursed fee paid to the universities.
The court said: “Violation of the order shall tantamount to contempt and humiliation of proceedings for derecognition of the instituton (s) concerned.”
“…We are constrained to take note of the sheer apathy displayed by the state… Equally, we may note that college and university administrations have showcased a striking lack of commitment towards the duty they hold to their students and state…,” the court said.