Certificates of 14 lakh students stuck as Telangana defaults on fee

P. Raju, son of a farmer, completed his B.Com degree from a private college last academic year but has not yet got his certificate.

Hyderabad: About 14 lakh students, including those who have completed their undergraduate and post-graduate degrees, are at a loss over the delays in receiving their degree certificates as college managements refused to distribute these documents citing a delay in fee reimbursement by the government.

It is not just private colleges that are refusing but government colleges appear to have followed suit to recover fee reimbursement scheme dues from the state government.

P. Raju, son of a farmer, completed his B.Com degree from a private college last academic year but has not yet got his certificate. “I have been making multiple trips to my college for my certificate for the last six months,” he said, adding that the college refused to release the certificate untill it receives the fee.

“The college said that it did not receive the fee-reimbursement amount and that it cannot give certificates. The college has asked me to pay the pending fee amount if I want the certificates and said that it would later refund the amount once it receives the dues from the government. But we are not in a financial position to pay the entire amount right now.”

Whenever he attended a job interview carrying with him the individual semester mark lists, potential employers asked him for his provisional certificate, which he is yet to receive. “It is the same with the government colleges too, my friends in other colleges are also running from pillar to post for obtaining certificates” he said.

In the case of engineering students, some student leaders have been fighting with their college managements to release the certificates. “The colleges will get the fee-reimbursement amount anyway, even if the payments are delayed. But several students are losing out on job opportunities because the managements’ refusal to hand over the certificates. Recently we have fought with the management of a college, after which it gave certificates to some of the students,” said Sharan Raichur, president, Telangana Engineering Students Joint Action Committee (TESJAC).

G. Sathish, convenor for KG to PG education in Telangana, said that the fee reimbursement is pending only for professional colleges offering degrees in engineering, business administration, pharmacy etc, whereas non-professional colleges have already received the fee-reimbursement for the last academic year.

About 14 lakh students applied for the fee-reimbursement last year and the number this year is 12.69 lakhs and counting. Private colleges say it’s difficult to run their institution without timely receipt of pending amounts from the government. “We need to look after staff salaries, maintenance of the institute etc. Some college managements are even taking loans to stay afloat,” said a member from the private colleges association.

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