HYDERABAD: Students from Andhra Pradesh (AP), who are currently studying engineering and other professional courses in Telangana state, are being forced to pay their college fees of three years at once, owing to the pending fee reimbursement bills from the AP government.
Those AP students who had taken admission before the bifurcation of the state and continued their courses further are now facing the heat. Many of them have also lost an opportunity to pursue higher education as the colleges have allegedly refused to release their degree certificates, citing fee arrears.
This year, a large number of engineering colleges affiliated to the Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University-Hyderabad (JNTU-H) and Osmania University (OU) withheld provisional documents of thousands of students from both the states and refused to release them until the government cleared the pending bills.
Citing heavy pending fees, the college managements defended their action and demanded that the government immediately release the fee arrears. Goutam Rao, president of Telangana Private Engineering Colleges Association, says, “Some of the students from AP have more than Rs 1 lakh arrears of fees. There are thousands of such students here. When such a huge amount is pending and there is no assurance from the government, how can we give the original documents to the students?” he asked.
However, the Telangana government has recently released nearly 30 per cent of the total sanctioned amount towards the fee reimbursement for Telangana students and assured to release the rest by the end of this year. With the assurance from the state government, most of the students from Telangana managed to get their documents and secured admission to post-graduate courses.
But the students from AP are still making rounds to the social welfare department offices of both the states with a request to process their scholarship applications. When they approached the Telangana government, the AP students were told that they must get the fee amount only from their state government. But the AP government also refused to process their applications citing administrative complications.
Rajasekhar from Kurnool, who has recently graduated from an engineering college in Hyderabad, says, “AP government officials said that unless the Telangana government officially declared the list of AP students studying here, the applications would not be processed.”
Abid Bhasha, an M.Tech student from Nellore, says, “My college refused to give my provisional documents of B.Tech degree. With no other option, I had to take admission to M.Tech in the same college. But I am yet to get my fee amount for three years of B.Tech course and two years of M.Tech course.”
As a result of this confusion between the two states, the fee payment by thousands of students has been stalled for more than three years. After being forced by the college managements, many students have paid Rs 35,000 per each academic year.