Bengaluru: Karnataka government has increased the medical and dental college fees by 15% for 2019-20. The fee has gone up by close to 50% in the past seven years.

The fee has increased from Rs 97,350 in 2018 to Rs 1, 11, 959 this year for government seats in private medical colleges. The fee stood at Rs 46,000 in 2012.

The fee for Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS) has been increased from Rs 63,030 to Rs 72,484. In 2012, it was Rs 35,000.

As compared to last year’s Rs 6, 83, 100, a medical seat will now cost Rs 7, 85,565 under the institutional quota. The MBBS fee in 2012 was Rs 3,57,500.

The dental college fee has gone up from Rs 4,63,320 in 2018 to Rs 5,32,818 this year. The BDS fee was Rs 2,53,000 in 2012.

There is no change in MBBS and BDS fees in government medical colleges. The fees for MBBS remain at Rs 50,000 and for BDS it is Rs 40,000.

The hike in medical seat fees have made students consider other options such as going abroad for studies and even change their field of interest.

According to reports, a student who scored 94.3% in class 12 exams said that she had applied for BSc in colleges and might join there. Since the fee would be a burden for the parents, the student said that they would rather pursue a masters degree programme abroad than spend so much money for an undergraduate course.

Jayaram MR, chairperson of Karnataka Professional Colleges Foundation, reportedly said that the fee for medical education is the lowest in Karnataka and that the hike is necessary to guarantee quality education. He said that the annual cost for a student amounts to an average of Rs 2.5-3 lakh in Karnataka. He went ahead to say that it is Rs 15 lakh in Maharashtra and Rs 10 lakh in Andhra Pradesh.