Shimla: Cash strapped Himachal Pradesh University’s efforts to hike fee to offset funding gaps has hit a wall for the student community is up in arms, forcing the authorities to defer the proposed fee hike.
Protesting students had threatened to disturb peace on the campus on yesterday but the police brought the condition under control.
Students boycotted classes, obstructed administrative and academic staff from performing their duties that had the police intervene to bring order on the campus.
Where students claimed that police had resorted to a cane charge, the police denied having done so. “Only mild force was used,” said a police spokesman.
After holding a meeting of the resource mobilization committee, vice-chancellor A D N Bajpai’s office, later in the evening issued a statement saying that the committee had decided to defer the fee hike decision.
Before announcing the proposed hike, the communiqué stated fee structure of school education board and that prevailing in neighbouring states would be considered.
Bajpai who three year term ended on May 24 has been given a six month extension by Governor Urmila Singh, who is also the chancellor of the state university.
Before his term in office was extended the Vice Chancellor at a media conference had disclosed, “the university requires over Rs 110 crore annually to meet its budgetary requirements but it has only got Rs 69 crore as grants from the state government for the financial year. After adding up the internal resources, which includes the fees paid by students, the annual shortfall is between Rs 10 to Rs 15 crore.”
About the challenges facing the university, he has said that resource mobilization was the biggest one.
“The university has successfully secured many research projects but students fee hike is the major resource that can mobilize resources for meeting budgetary needs of the institution,” he had said.