Mumbai: For fee payment, college goes digital, but system can’t cope

Mumbai: Parents of students attending Ramnarain Ruia College, Matunga, are finding it hard to adjust to the new system of online payment of fees. The college has introduced an internal system to enable digital payment of fees, deciding to go ‘cashless’ from this academic year.

As per the new digital system, students must pay their course fees for both junior and degree college programmes online. Under this system, parents must log in to the college system using their mobile number and they will receive a one-time password (OTP). Then they receive another OTP before they make the online payment of fees through their credit or debit card.

Parents have complained, this system of receiving two OTPs is confusing and time-consuming. In addition, the system often ‘hangs’ as several parents try to log in simultaneously. Parent Vishal Chandan said, “When I wanted to pay my son’s fees, I did not receive either OTP because of a poor internet connection. I had to log in and try several times, even for a small amount like Rs 100. Ultimately, I had to go to the college and pay the fees offline, so for me, the entire digital exercise was pointless.”

Fee amounts ranging from Rs 30,000 to Rs 100, for various purposes, like examination fees, course fees, library fees or administrative fees have to be paid digitally. College authorities revealed they have arranged for a help desk, with support staff to help parents facing difficulties. Anushree Lokur, principal-in-charge, Ruia College, told The Free Press Journal, “Since this is the first time we are going digital for all financial transactions, there are some loopholes but we have arranged for staff to help parents. We want to go completely digital and are improving our systems everyday.”

The aim behind introducing online payment system is to relieve parents from the physical stress of coming to the college to pay fees. Lokur added, “We do not want parents or students to stand in long queues to pay fees. We want to make it easier for them by shifting online so that they can pay their fees from their homes. Most parents are happy with our new policy but there are few difficulties which we are rectifying to make the process better.”

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