NEW DELHI: Medicos securing MBBS seats in private medical colleges could soon be eligible for educational loans repayable after 10-15 years. The NITI Aayog, at the behest of Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, has nudged the Indian Banks' Association to offer educational loans up to Rs 10 lakh per annum to students who get admission for pursuing medicine in private colleges.
At present, most banks do not support students getting into private or deemed universities for studying MBBS, fee for which run into Rs 7-20 lakh per annum. “We have been discussing the issue with the banks for a while and they had a long list of reasons on why they do not want to expand the ambit of education loans for MBBS in private medical colleges, including the high chances of these loans turning into non-performing assets. But we are working on a proposal to allay their fears as most of these medics do start earning after completing their degrees,” a senior NITI Aayog functionary said.
He added that the government was also ready to offer itself as the guarantor so that students are not required to keep houses, non-agricultural land or fixed deposit as collateral in favour of the financial institution concerned. Fee for pursuing MBBS in government colleges in India is mostly less than Rs 4 lakh but can run up to run even over Rs 1 crore for the five-and-ahalf-years in case of private institutions.
Officials in the medical education section of the health ministry said the measure was a part to “clean” medical education. “On one hand we are trying to regulate fee for half the seats in private medical colleges; on the other, we are trying to ensure easily available loan so that students from all income groups can get into MBBS courses,” said an official.
The Medical Council of India-Board of Government has suggested to the government capping MBBS course fee in private colleges at around Rs 8 lakh per year for nearly 22,000 seats.Under the National Medical Commission Act, the Centre is to regulate fee for 50 per cent of the seats in private colleges while the states can also rein in the same the rest of the seats.