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Capitation fee illegal, unethical: SC

The Supreme Court has come down heavily on private medical and engineering colleges demanding ‘capitation fee’, deeming it ‘illegal and unethical.’ The court also expressed its unhappiness on the fact that despite the constitutional pronouncements by the apex court categorically calling for a stop on profiteering or acceptance of capitation fee, such practices are continuing unchecked.

A bench comprising Justices KS Radhakrishnan and AK Sikri asked the central government to make laws to put an end to such practices. It said that the central government, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Central Bureau of Investigation or the Intelligence Wing have to take effective steps to prevent such unethical practices or else self-financing institutions will turn to be students financing institutions.

It said that mushrooming of large number of medical, engineering, nursing and pharmaceutical colleges need a serious introspection on the part of the government.

‘We notice with concern the unprecedented growth of the technical and medical institutions in this country, which has resulted in widespread prevalence of various unethical practices. Collection of large amount by way of capitation fee running into crores of rupees for MBBS and postgraduate seats, exorbitant fee, donation etc, by many of such self financing institutions, have kept the meritorious but financially poor students away from those institutions. Pressure, it is also seen, is being extended by various institutions, for the additional intake of students, not always for the benefit of the student community and thereby serve the community, but for their own betterment’, said the court.

The court was hearing a plea from Rohilkhand Medical College & Hospital, Bareilly, which had challenged the Medical Council of India’s decision to revoke the permission which was granted to the college for renewal of admission for additional intake of students for the academic session 2013-2014.
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