MUMBAI/NEW DELHI: The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) council has decided to waive fees for physically challenged students. The council, headed by HRD minister Smriti Irani, also decided not to take any “knee-jerk” decision on a fee hike.
The council, the highest government-nominated body of the 16 IITs, met on Tuesday. A committee has been set up to suggest a solution for the proposal to hike the IIT fees of Rs 90,000 per year to Rs 2.5 lakh. A source said, “The minister insisted that the interests of socially and economically weaker sections should be protected at all costs. She said a fee hike is a sensitive issue and cannot be rushed into. IITs will look into the fee hike issue again.”
The IIT joint admission board’s (JAB) proposal to increase the quota of students appearing for JEE (Advanced) from 1.5 lakh to 2 lakh too has received the council’s consent.
The JAB had proposed to increase the seats at a meeting at IIT-Guwahati in the last week of September. The change was proposed as there were almost 200 vacant seats at the IITs this year and more IITs will be taking students from the IIT-JEE (A) exam from 2016.
The council has also approved a new plan, PAL, under which weaker students will be mentored so that they can adjust into the IIT system easily.
“We do not want a repetition of what happened at IIT-Roorkee,” said the source. A student from the institute had fled from the hostel leaving behind a ‘suicide’ note on September 6. The student had returned to his Delhi residence a few days later.
It has also decided to set up a committee to look into admissions for foreign students in IITs. “It has been left to the IITs to formulate the strategy,” the source said.