The All India Council for Technical Education plans to act on student and parent complaints and issue showcause notices to management schools and deemed universities that do not refund tuition fees and retain the original academic certificates of students who wish to change their college before the academic course begins.
The technical education regulating body plans to direct the institutions to refund the entire fee collected from the student after deducting processing fees, which cannot exceed Rs 1,000.
If the student leaves after joining the course, and the seat falls vacant by the last date of admission, the institution will have to return the fee collected with proportionate deductions of monthly fee and proportionate hostel rent.
There are around 1,100 B-schools and 100 deemed universities in India.
Last year, AICTE received complaints from students and parents against over 100 management schools, after which it had directed around 70 per cent of the institutes to refund fees.
AICTE has the powers to do this under the AICTE Act, an official said.
AICTE's decision will benefit students like Navin Raina (name changed), who has applied to three colleges for an MBA programme.
One of the colleges has fixed the admission date as February 9 and the call letter states that the Rs 1.8 lakh first year fee is not refundable.
However, there are some B-schools that already have a refund policy. For instance, a professor from Mumbai-based SP Jain Institute of Management and Research, pointed out: "Last year, we refunded Rs 1.99 lakh to students after a deduction of the processing fee of not more than Rs 1,000, as directed by AICTE. In any case, we have our own refund policy in place."