Hyderabad, July 9: Justice Noushad Ali of the AP High Court on Tuesday refused to permit private engineering colleges to collect more money than the fee fixed by the Admission and Fee Regulatory Committee (AFRC).
However, the judge directed the Eamcet convener to inform students during admissions about their impending liability to pay the differential amount, if any, depending on the result of the writ petitions.
The judge also granted liberty to private engineering colleges’ managements to obtain an undertaking from each student who intends to join their colleges that their final fees will be subject to the outcome of the petitions pending before the court.
The judge was dealing with writ petitions by managements of engineering colleges challenging the GO 57 issued on July 6 fixing and notifying a fee of Rs 30,000 in majority of colleges per student for the first year.
While granting the interim order by refusing the plea of the colleges to charge higher fee, the judge said that the court should keep the interests of not only the petitioner colleges, but also the interests of the students on whom the ultimate burden lies.
Counsels appearing for the colleges contended that the recommendations of the AFRC for fixing fee at the government level were not based on objective criteria and without taking into account the material produced by them.
They said that the AFRC gave a formal hearing to the engineering colleges on May 25, 2013 to fix the fee for each of the colleges. They argued that the colleges would face difficulties if they are not permitted to charge a higher fee than the one fixed by the AFRC.
Refuting the contentions of the colleges, K.G. Krishna Murthy additional advocate general said that the AFRC made recommendations by taking the assistance of auditors and payscale expert consultants in fixing the fee.
The judge directed the AFRC to communicate the reasons supporting the issuance of the GO to all the petitioner colleges within two weeks and posted the case after three weeks.
Justice Noushad Ali made it clear that this stage the court was not inclined to grant an exparte order permitting the petitioner colleges to charge a fee higher than the fee statutorily notified.
He observed that the right of the managements to fix their own fee on the basis of the principles laid down by the Supreme Court in P.A. Inamdar versus State of Maharashtra does not really fall for consideration as the decision making process adopted by the AFRC was raised as a core ground against the GO.
State not to block colleges
Hyderabad: The state government on Tuesday submitted before the AP High Court that it has no intention to interfere in the administration or finances of the private engineering colleges.
Advocate general A. Sudarshan Reddy made the submission before a Division Bench comprising Chief Justice Kalyan Jyoti Sengupta and Justice G. Rohini in a batch of writ petitions by the managements of private engineering colleges challenging the online admissions of management quota seats.
He said GO 66 was issued to regulate and compliment the process of admissions of management quota seats more transparent and merit based, without there being exploitations.
Mr. Reddy said that the government has issued the GO 66 following complaints by the students that several private engineering colleges were not willing to give applications to them for admissions and also the colleges have failed to give reasons for non-admission of meritorious students.
He contended that the competent authority would be in a position to address such issues if the colleges gives the reasons for non-admission of such students and also keeping various aspects in view, the government wanted the colleges to have a common web portal which would act as a “single window for category B seats” for both the colleges and students for filling up the seats.
Arguments would continue tomorrow.