Assam Assembly on Friday unanimously passed a bill to regulate fees of private schools, having a provision to slap a penalty to the tune of Rs 10 lakh as well withdrawal of registration for violators.
Speaker Hitendra Nath Goswami announced the passage of the The Assam Non-Government Educational Institutions (Regulation of Fees) Bill, 2018 in the House after a brief discussion over some amendments brought in by opposition MLAs.
As per the bill, the government shall set up one or more Fee Regulatory Committees to determine the fee structure for any standard or course of study in any non-government schools imparting education in primary, middle, secondary and higher secondary level.
The committee would headed by a government nominated retired district or sessions judge or an official of All India Service. Besides, it will have a chartered accountant, a civil engineer, a representative of the private institutes and an academician as members.
The Secretary of the Assam Higher Secondary Education Council and Board of Secondary Education will be another member, while the director of education shall act as a coordinator to the committee, the bill mentioned.
The Committee shall recommend maximum limits of fees to be charged by different categories of non-government educational institutions every year before starting of the academic session.
The bill also said that the government will form a Fee Revision Committee to revise the orders already passed by the Fee Regulatory Committee. The Fee Revision Committee will be headed by a chairperson, who will be a retired judge of a high court and will be nominated by the government.
Regarding violations, the bill said, in addition to refund twice the amount of fee to the parents of the students, the institute management shall pay a fine up to Rs five lakh for first contravention and up to Rs 10 lakh for the second contravention.
In case of third and subsequent contraventions, the registration or affiliation or NOC will be cancelled by the authorities on the recommendation of the Fee Regulatory Committee.