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Sharp homeo fee hike on cards

Calcutta, Jan. 24: Tuition fees in government-run homeopathic medical colleges in the state are set to jump from Rs 14 a month to Rs 1,000.

The government has also decided to make an entrance test mandatory for admission to all homeopathy colleges, both government-run and private. So far, only students seeking admission to the government colleges had to sit for a test, conducted by the same board that holds the Joint Entrance Examinations.

Health department sources said a government order on the issue is expected soon.

The director of homeopathy in the department, Ashoke Mohan Chattopadhyay, today said students will have to pay Rs 1,000 as monthly tuition fees for the four-and-a-half year course. The increase is sharp for the government colleges, which now charge Rs 14 a month, and is expected to draw howls of protest.

“The amount we used to collect from the students per month as fees was paltry. The government is in dire financial straits and can no longer afford to carry on like this. With the increased fees, the homeopathic medical colleges can be upgraded and run better,” said Chattopadhyay.

It has been decided that 50 per cent of students in the private colleges will pay Rs 1,000 a month as fees. But these colleges can charge an additional one-time amount of up to Rs 75,000 as development fee from the rest of the students.

About 200 students enrol in the state’s four government colleges every year and 350 take admission in the eight private colleges. Health department sources said the decision to increase fees was taken because the government wanted the colleges to become as self-reliant as possible in view of the cash crunch.

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