A Kerala MP has vowed to fight the new education bill in the state that allows private professional colleges to charge higher fees from non-resident Indian (NRI) students.
Lok Sabha member Panniyan Ravindran, while talking to the Gulf Daily News newspaper, described the new bill as unfair and said he would fight it.
He was in Bahrain to attend a memorial meeting marking the first death anniversary of Kerala's former chief minister P.K. Vasudevan Nair.
The Kerala Professional Colleges/Institutions (Prohibition of Capitation Fee, Regulation of Admission, Fixation of Non-Exploitative Fee and Other Measures to Ensure Equity and Excellence in Professional Education) Bill, 2006, was passed last month after much debate.
The bill allows private professional colleges in the state to charge fees as high as five times the normal fees from NRI students.
It also provides for reservation of 15 percent of seats for NRI students.
The new bill has drawn flak from NRIs, especially from the Gulf.
Ravindran, whose Communist Party of India (CPI) is a partner of the ruling coalition government in Kerala, has said that his party would persuade the government to withdraw the clause on fees from the bill.
"I fully understand the concern of the NRI community. We shall do everything to ensure that children of NRI parents belonging to the low income group also secure admission to professional colleges by paying normal fees," he told the newspaper.
There are presently 70 engineering colleges and eight medical colleges in the self-financing sector in Kerala. These colleges have close to 10,000 seats for engineering and 800 for medical science.