In a major development, the Madras High Court permitted private unaided colleges and schools to collect 75 per cent of the fee amount from students and parents for the academic year 2020-21. The court gave the decision in view of the uncertainty over the opening of the colleges and schools due to the Covid pandemic.
Around 40 per cent of the fees can be collected as advance fees on or before August 31. The balance 35 per cent shall be collected within two months, Justice N Anand Venkatesh said.
The judge was passing interim orders on a batch of over 30 PIL petitions from the private educational institutions challenging an order dated April 20 of the government preventing them from collecting the full fees and at the same time directing them to pay the salaries to the teaching and non-teaching staff.
The judge said that he was passing this order taking into consideration the present situation and to find an interim solution to clear the logjam and to balance the interest of all the stakeholders.
The unaided private institutions shall collect the arrears of fees payable for 2019-2020 on or before September 30. If any student has already paid the entire fees including arrears, the same shall not be a ground to claim refund of the fees, the judge made it clear.
The Fee Committee, constituted by the government, shall immediately start the process of the determining the tuition fees for the respective institutions and make an attempt to complete the same within eight months from August 2020.