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After JNU, government pushes for fee hike in AIIMS

AIIMS Resident Doctors Association is opposing the proposal for upward revision in the tuition fees and patient charges contending that ‘education and healthcare are building blocks’ of society but not commercial sectors.

After JNU, government pushes for fee hike in AIIMS
Representative image Image Credit: ANI

While the students of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) are protesting against fee hike, the Central government is pushing hard for about 10 times fees hike in All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi. The government has also asked the AIIMS administration to hike the charges for patients to recover the cost of the services.

"In pursuance of the directions of the Government of India (Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Health and Family Welfare), AIIMS Delhi is required to review all fees and user charges in the institute," said a letter from AIIMS Financial Adviser. The circular has set stage for agitation in the most reputed and cheapest medical institution and hospital of the country. AIIMS Resident Doctors Association is opposing the proposal for upward revision in the tuition fees and patient charges contending that 'education and healthcare are building blocks' of society but not commercial sectors. The decision is also uniting students across institutions and universities as student associations Delhi University and JNU are also opposing the fees hike proposed in AIIMS.

"Being a student in India is becoming expensive each day! Modi government refused to believe that education and healthcare are building blocks of any nation. After JNU, now fee hike is proposed in AIIMS. Reject this model of commercialization of education," said Kawalpreet Kaur, Delhi president of All India Students' Association (AISA). She is a graduate in psychology and law from Delhi University.

AIIMS is a sought after destination for underprivileged people in Northern States of India like Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Haryana who come here in the hope of low cost and high quality treatment. Presently, the institute gets grant of about Rs 3,500 crore per annum from the public exchequer to maintain its subsidized education and healthcare facilities. It also generates about Rs 2 – 3 crores from students and patients. The government has reportedly directed the AIIMS administration to generate a minimum of about Rs 70-80 crore per annum by hiking fees and user charges for patients.

Please visit Live Discourse on JNU Protest and Discourse on Subsidized Education for more news and updates on the issue.

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