Fee hike row talks inconclusive

- POST REPORT, Kathmandu

Sep 18, 2014-

The dialogue between a government panel and the All Nepal Independent Student Union-Revolutionary (ANNISU-R), the student wing of the CPN-Maoist, ended inconclusively on Thursday after both sides were adamant to their positions.

The meeting held in the Ministry of Education for two hours failed to find a solution after the ANNISU-R rejected the request of the panel led by Mahashram Sharma, director general at the Department of Education, to withdraw its protest. The union has been protesting against private schools and colleges claiming that they defied the legal provisions and imposed exorbitant fee on students. The union has padlocked the account sections of 220 schools and colleges across the country demanding that tuition fee hike be rolled back. “The dialogue failed as the government officials were not serious towards our demands,” said Lal Bahadur Tamang, ANNISU-R treasurer. “We will enforce our protest from Friday.” The union has threatened to padlock all the private schools across the country if its demands are not addressed.

The ANNISU-R in May had withdrawn its similar protest after the government panel agreed to address a majority of its demands, including rolling back the tuition fee hike. The both sides had reached to a five-point agreement, paving the way for smooth operation of the private schools that had been affected by the union’s protest. According to the agreement, the private schools would withdraw the tuition fee hike and adjust the difference in the tuition fee in the following months.

The government panel, however, claimed that the dialogue failed as the union was not ready to wait even for a day. “We asked them to withdraw the protest to create conducive environment for the agreement but they rejected,” said Suprabhat Bhandari, chairman of Guardian Association Nepal and member of the panel. The next meeting has been slated for Friday.


Published: 19-09-2014 09:20

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