News UpdatesStudents Of Nirma University Write To Gujarat HC Seeking Reduction In College Fees LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK24 July 2020 7:42 AMShare This – xStudents of the Nirma University, Ahmedabad have sent a letter petition to the Gujarat High Court urging it to stay the University’s notification dated July 1, 2020, demanding full fees from all students. “To demand full fees as previously demanded, which obviously includes numerous charges NOT being utilized in the online teaching is sheer arbitrary. Therefore, the move…Your free access to Live Law has expiredTo read the article, get a premium account.Your Subscription Supports Independent JournalismSubscription starts from ₹ 599+GST (For 6 Months)View PlansPremium account gives you:Unlimited access to Live Law Archives, Weekly/Monthly Digest, Exclusive Notifications, Comments.Reading experience of Ad Free Version, Petition Copies, Judgement/Order Copies.Subscribe NowAlready a subscriber?LoginStudents of the Nirma University, Ahmedabad have sent a letter petition to the Gujarat High Court urging it to stay the University’s notification dated July 1, 2020, demanding full fees from all students. “To demand full fees as previously demanded, which obviously includes numerous charges NOT being utilized in the online teaching is sheer arbitrary. Therefore, the move is manifestly arbitrary, illegal and thus unconstitutional being hit by Article 14 of the Constitution,” the students wrote. Through the impugned notification, the University administration had intimated that it will start online sessions for the current academic year from 6th July 2020. To facilitate the same, the students have been asked to submit their full fees by August 5, 2020. The students have argued that the impugned notification was issued without keeping into due consideration the “disproportionate impact” the lockdown has had on the livelihood of their families. It is stated that the University’s claim that online teaching will incur MORE cost is “illogical, irrational and manifestly arbitrary.” It is submitted, “the prevalent situation indubitably warrants from the university to arrange and provide for special considerations in these unprecedented times. Appropriate relaxations are a bare minimum threshold that the University should have ideally met without any external calling.” The students have pointed out that as per Rule 34A of Academic Regulations of the University, the academic fees has to be decided by the Director General in consultation with the Board of Governors. However, per the official website of the University, “the last meeting of the board was conducted on 28-09-2019. This proves that the university is unwilling to change its fee structure even in these uncertain times.” It is submitted that the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted underlying “gaps” in the education regulatory system, including the higher bargaining power that educational institutions exercise over its students. “A fair balance would provide that if there is any reduction of cost, there should also be a proportionate reduction in the fees. If the benefit of reduction is not shifted to the students, it would lead to colleges earning beyond the standard set by the law and thus, would be considered illegal,” the students stressed. Reliance is placed on Modern Dental College v. State of Madhya Pradesh, 2016 7 SCC 353, where the Supreme Court had held that a University cannot charge a fee that is beyond the purpose of fulfilling the object of education. The students have therefore urged the Court to ask the University to waive off a part of the fees being charged and accordingly refund the proportionate fee of those students who have already paid. Subscribe to LiveLaw, enjoy Ad free version and other unlimited features, just INR 599 Click here to Subscribe. All payment options available.loading….Next Story
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The Center for Middle Eastern Studies (CMES) at Harvard University today opened its first overseas office, in Tunisia, home to a tradition of learning and research that extends from Antiquity to the present. The office and the year-round programs run from the location are made possible by the support of Harvard College alumnus Hazem Ben-Gacem ’92.“The Middle East is a part of the world that you’ll never fully understand unless you get your feet on the ground and experience it first-hand,” said William Granara, CMES Director and Professor of Arabic. “Thanks to Hazem’s generosity, Harvard students and scholars have greater resources to pursue in-depth field research and can more substantively engage in language and cultural immersion experiences.”Center for Middle Eastern Studies Winter Session study excursion to Tunisia, January 2016“From the beginning the hope has been to establish an outpost where Harvard faculty and students would come to discover Tunisia—its history, language, culture, art, and people—and integrate this experience into their scholarship and education,” said Ben-Gacem. “I’m very excited by this first step towards a substantial Harvard presence in Tunisia.”Founded in 1954, CMES, through interdisciplinary teaching and research, has produced hundreds of graduates with Middle East and North Africa expertise who have gone on to directly impact students, scholars, and the public both in the United States and around the world. Its Tunisia office will provide students and scholars with a bridge to renowned Tunisian archival facilities, serve as an incubator for analysis of the evolving social, cultural, legal, and political movements in the region, and offer an intellectual hub for scholars of, and from, Tunisia, the Maghreb, the Mediterranean, and the wider Middle East region.“Broadening the contexts in which teaching and learning happen at Harvard is a crucial element of our engagement with the world. We are always seeking opportunities to make the University more intentionally global, and the field office in Tunisia will bring the world to Harvard and Harvard to the world in exciting new ways that will shape important work across fields and disciplines,” said Harvard president Drew Faust.Programs available at the Tunis location for students and faculty from across the University include Harvard Tunisia Scholarships for Harvard graduate and undergraduate research, funding for Harvard faculty sabbatical research, an Arabic language summer program for Harvard graduate and undergraduate students, and a three-week Winter Session course for Harvard students.