A medical aspirant has filed a complaint against Pravara Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS), a deemed-to-be university in Ahmednagar, claiming that she was denied admission to the Bachelor of Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery (BAMS) course when she refused to pay the excessive fees demanded by the institute.
In her complaint to the Ayush Admissions Central Counseling Committee (AACCC), the college admission authority under the Ministry of Ayush (Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha, and Homoeopathy), the student claimed that PIMS's Pravara Rural Ayurved College turned away meritorious students in the first phase of institute-level admission held between November 9 and 16. The student also alleged that other students with relatively lower National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) scores were admitted in lieu of capitation fees.
The college was granted recognition after the centralised rounds of admission for the undergraduate (UG) Ayush courses. As a result, AACCC allowed it to fill all its 100 BAMS seats at the institute level.
College demanding exorbitant fees
The father of the complainant said that he was devastated after the college authorities demanded them to pay Rs 10 lakh in addition to the Rs 5 lakh fee approved for the institute. "My child had secured seats at two other colleges but had turned it down to seek admission at this college due to its repute and proximity to our home. However, when the college asked for the excessive amount, we told them that it was difficult for us to manage even the regular fees. They then refused admission to us, even as other students with much lower scores were admitted," he said.
The student is now left with no other option but to lose a year and participate in the next admission cycle.
Response from the authorities
When FPJ contacted Khalid Ambekar, principal of the college, he said that he wasn't involved with the admission process and directed to Amol Sargar, an aide to Rajendra Vikhe-Patil, chancellor of the PIMS. "The rules and regulations for deemed-to-be universities are different from the colleges affiliated to Maharashtra University of Health Sciences (MUHS). The students are not aware of many things. I don't suppose any rules have been flouted in admission," he said.
Sargar didn't respond to calls and a message.
Vishnu Magare, vice chancellor of PIMS, said that he wasn't aware of the issue. "I will respond after enquiring about it," he said.
The college has so far filled 43 of its 100 seats, with the second phase of institute-level admission starting on Wednesday.