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The administration and the Board of Governors, together have approved a partial rollback of the recent non-tuition fee hike. ‘Students Against Fee Hike’, IIT-B who majorly led the protest demanding a rollback of the fee hike, received a mail from the Registrar on 11th September. While a total of INR 2050 of the non-tuition fees has been reduced in five components for the students already on roll, there are no changes in the fee structure, charged at the time of the admission.The roll back of the hike is anywhere between 43 percent to 28 percent depending on category and programme of study of the student.

A committee was constituted on the second day of the relay hunger strike hosted by ‘SAFH IIT-B’, which included the Director, the Dean(SA), Deputy Director(FEA), GSAA(PG), RSF representative and three representatives from ‘SAFH IIT-B’. After two meetings of the committee, the Deans committee finalised the proposal for the rollback on 10th August, and the BoG approved this on 12th August.

The updated fee structure for the students already on roll is as follows:
[table id=5 /]
*Applicable only to registered students of IIT Bombay.

The committee also recommended that an amount of 750 INR per credit be charged for summer courses. The committee further recommended that the Mess Advance be increased to 20,000 INR (which is currently in place) from the previous 15,000 INR.

Before the fee hike, an amount of INR 6000 was charged as ‘Contribution to Hostel Subsidy’ which was adjusted (in case of students from all the Hostels except for students from H-15 and H-16) against the mess bills, effectively making it a part of Semester Mess Advance in addition to INR 15000. In the recent fee hike, this component was scrapped off instead of which a similar component in the fee structure namely ‘Mess Establishment Charges’ was introduced, supposedly charging INR 1500 to everyone, without any kind of adjustments done to the hostel mess bill. After the above revision, these charges have been dropped to INR 1250. The revision also suggests that these charges to be increased by 10% every year, rounded up in multiples of 50.

The expenses for running the hospital along with the cost of medicines (internal + externally recommended) has gone up from the last two years. Furthermore the cost of accident coverage and external medical aid has increased from 67 lacs in 2015-16 to 80 lacs in 2016-17. Keeping this in mind the Medical Fees and the Student Accident Insurance Fund were increased. This will ensure a higher insurance coverage for students. The change in the insurance coverage for medical expenses (non-accident) has thereby been changed from 1,00,000 INR (old fee structure) to 2,00,000 INR (first fee hike) to 1,50,000 INR (current report).

Besides the aforementioned drops, the rest includes a major decrease of INR 800 in ‘Student Benevolent Fund’ and another decrease of INR 250 in ‘Gymkhana Fee’ and ‘Registration Fee’ after the recent revision.

The above inputs were obtained from the Dean of Student Affairs’ office.

For the Autumn Semester 2017-18, the increased fees that were paid by the students will most likely be adjusted in the Spring Semester’s fee, an official source confirmed.

Post the decision, Students Against Fee Hike put out a statement saying :

“SAFH views this as a partial but important victory. The victory is important as this reduction in fee will benefit the student community in the Institute. Moreover, SAFH could bring a large number of students together through this struggle by way of signature campaigns, protest demonstration, hunger strike. It was able to present a student’s perspective on important issues such as commercialisation of education and research even in public universities and the undemocratic and non-transparent decision-making in elite institutes. In course of negotiation with the administration, important decisions were taken to consult student community in future revisions of fee structure. SAFH through its campaign was able to bring a large amount of data regarding the functioning of the institute into the public domain and we hope that administration will continue to put out more data for all to see and be informed.

The attack on public education is here to stay and IIT Bombay will not be spared from this. Keeping this in view, SAFH views the victory as partial. We believe that more effort is required to ensure that the interests of students are protected in future, not only at institute level but also at national level. Fee hikes and cutbacks in scholarships are part of the larger agenda of tying educational sector to WTO policies. These developments will hurt students from marginalised and oppressed sections of society the most. Our national education policies are rendering “national institutes of importance” more exclusive and elite.

Students associated with SAFH will endeavour to make IIT Bombay a democratic, inclusive and student centric campus.”

However, the final update hasn’t been sent officially on the student notices as of yet. An official mail from the administration should be expected soon.