Master of Business Administration (MBA) is one of the most in-demand career paths in India. However, the cost of attending an Indian Institute of Management (IIM) has risen dramatically in recent years. IIM Ahmedabad’s fees have increased by 575% in the last 15 years, from Rs four lakh in 2007 to Rs 27 lakh now, according to receipts shared by Maheshwer Peri, entrepreneur and founder of a student consulting platform, Career360, for the academic year 2020-21. “IIMs have single-handedly led to higher education becoming expensive and unaffordable,” Peri claimed.
In a Twitter thread, Peri claimed that the rise in the fee structure at IIM Ahmedabad has been against the inflation growth which has remained at 146% during the same period. “For a country starved of funds for education, IIMs increase fees every year and invest the surplus to earn 8% when the inflation is 6%. These market-driven fees have single-handedly contributed to the increase and now unaffordable fee structures,” Peri wrote.
IIMs don’t need to raise their fee structure each year as they have enough funds to sustain, Peri further claimed. Even if the institute charges one-third of the current fee structure, it would still be in surplus, he pointed out. IIM Ahmedabad currently charges 200% above its actual requirement, according to the claim. The institute is using the surplus amount for investment purposes, Peri said. “As of March 2021, IIM-A invested Rs 1345 crore in government securities, and term deposits, among others. In one year alone, the investments increased by Rs 136 crore implying that the tuition fees of Rs 105 crore were collected to be banked,” he said. The monthly expenditure of IIMs is about Rs 16 crore. However, they had cash in the bank of Rs 42 crore in 2021 and Rs 79 crore in 2020, according to the receipt.
Several IIMs, both new and old, have raised their fees in recent years, including IIM Lucknow, Calcutta, and Bangalore. Concerns have been raised about the lack of government intervention and accountability in regulating this hike. IIMs have the authority to set their own fees, select and remove chairpersons and directors, and make other key decisions. However, business schools that fall under the purview of the UGC and AICTE are restricted from making certain changes.
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