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Students who wish to study abroad bear the brunt of the falling rupee

Aug 28, 2013 09:13 AM IST India India

Chennai: The rupee reached a new low of 67 vs US dollar on Wednesday, witnessing its biggest fall in 18 years. Bearing the brunt of the falling rupee are students who wish to study abroad.

"It's like choosing to work for two years in between has become a punishment for me. It's really bad," said 23-year-old Prasanth. The falling rupee has dealt a blow to the career prospects of students like Prasanth.

Overjoyed at getting admission to a German University for his masters, Prasanth is now wondering where he'll get the extra money for his fees. Prasanth had applied for a Rs 7 lakh loan in June, soon after his admission. By the time he made the payment in August, he fell short by over Rs 1 lakh.

"The time I decided to go for my higher studies was February-March. Then the value was Rs 68 per Euro. By the time I got my admit, it was 76 and by the time I made the transaction in August it was 81," Prasanth said.

The tuition fees at any US university ranges between $ 50,000 and 60,000 a year. There has been a 10 per cent drop in the value of the rupee over the past two months. So, a student who had applied for a Rs 20 lakh loan in July, will need Rs 22 lakh now. Prasanth's father, who's due to retire next month, has to dip into his savings.

"The government should have taken some remedial steps. The government should have curtailed the fluctuation so that the parents like us don't suffer. They would have planned something like my post retirement plans. The banks give only fixed amount of loan, the rest has to be borne by us and we may not have the source," Prasanth's father said.

Some students have opted out. The number of students studying overseas has fallen over 15 per cent this year, putting their dreams on hold for factors beyond their control.