About 29 aggrieved diploma engineering students at Kharghar's Bharati Vidyapeeth have decided to approach political parties to get their fees refunded from the social welfare department. They arrived the decision after they failed to get the same after two years repeated follow up.
"We are in talks with Maharashtra Navnirman Vidyarthi Sena (MNVS) for their support and they have assured us they will help to get their fees refunded," said a student. As per the central government, there is a provision of scholarship for students from backward classes that include ST, OBC, SBC and Nomadic Tribes, and they are entitled to get a refund.
According to students, about 29 students of diploma engineering have been waiting for a refund of their fees for the last three years. Instead, they have been getting only assurances from the college administration.
The college administration blames the social welfare department in Thane that is responsible for releasing the funds. It says the latter has not released the funds for the academic year 2010-11.
Students claim that every time they visit the college to know of the status of their fee refund, they are given a new date. The last date was given to the students was January 6, when the social welfare department was supposed to deposit the fund in the institutes's account. But it did not happen and fund was not deposited. "In the last three years, we have met the college administration several times, but they just give us assurances and there is no concrete result so far," said a student, who is entitled to get back his fees as he belongs to the Nomadic Tribes. He added that those who passed from the institute in subsequent years have already received their fees.
Students of academic session of 2008-11, who cleared exams in 2011, are the ones facing a problem. "In the first two years, we received our refunds. But in 2010-11, we did not receive the scholarship and it is still pending," said another student.
Interestingly, when a few students among them when contacted the social welfare department, they were told that they dispatched the money to the institute. The total outstanding pending is Rs9,06,780 of 29 students. But, the institute claims they have not received the fund from them.
PN Tandon, principal of Institute of Technology (Polytechnic), Kharghar, informed that they have been following the issue since the problem began in 2011, when we did not received the fund. It is the department's responsibility to send the fund in time. He added that every week we meet officials of the social welfare department to release the fund.
No one from the social welfare department was available for a comment. Three years on Engineering students of Bharati Vidyapeeth claim that whenever they visit their college to learn the status of their fee refund, they are given a new date by the administration. Santosh Gavas, a member of MNVS of Konkan region said that he will support the students if they have any problems.