CHENNAI: Pointing out that the decision not to reimburse the fees claimed against management quota/spot admission seat in any institution/university from April would severely affect students hailing from SC/ST communities, Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami on Wednesday sought the intervention of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in this regard to revert to the past practice of reimbursing the fees claimed against management quota.
In a letter to the Prime Minister, Palaniswami also suggested that the scheme could be funded with a sharing pattern of 60:40 between the Centre and State respectively, as in the case of other Central schemes so that there would be more clarity in the scheme funding.
Stating that the right course of action should be to step up the allocation for this scheme substantially rather than making modifications in the guidelines to curtail the existing benefit, he also requested the Prime Minister to release `1803.50 crore towards arrears in reimbursement to Tamil Nadu, up to March this year.
He said since the admission process for higher and technical education courses in the State is about to begin, the Prime Minister should issue directions to the Union ministry of social justice and empowerment in this regard.
Palaniswami said that in Tamil Nadu, a large number of SC/ST students belonging to poor economic background who were not able to get admission under the government quota on merit, had been availing themselves of the benefit under the post-matric scholarship scheme under management quota seats in self-financing colleges. In fact, this scheme had largely benefitted the State to achieve higher gross enrolment ratio of more than 45 per cent.
Non-reimbursement of fees for management quota seats under the new guidelines, would create a huge setback in achieving the goal of social equity and social justice, as it would deny opportunities to poor SC/ST students in higher and technical education, the Chief Minister said and added that this might cause serious resentment and unrest among the SC/ST community.
He also pointed out that instead of strengthening this scheme in the interest of achieving social justice and promoting the welfare of SC/ST, the revised guidelines would only dilute the State’s efforts in this regard.