Ordinance on Right to Education Soon: Tara

Orders suspension of Dangerpora ZEOs, officials for SSA embezzlement

JAMMU– Deputy Chief Minister Tara Chand today said in order to provide free education to all children in the state a proposal for an ordinance would be put before the cabinet very soon. He said detailed discussions have been done since the draft was put in public domain and the education department has taken suggestions from all quarters to frame the ordinance.

He directed the Secretary, School Education Department to finalize the ordinance, so that the matter is taken up in the next cabinet for final approval and early issuance of the ordinance.

“The state law has gone beyond the central provisions and Right to Education would be available to every child in the state between age of four to fourteen years for free and compulsory education till completion of elementary education with special provisions for children from weaker sections of the society,” he added.

 Tara Chand chaired a high level review meeting of the Education Department and took a detailed review of the pace and progress of SSA and RMSA projects in the state.

The meeting was attended by Secretary, School Education Hirdesh Kumar, Directors of RMSA, SSA, School Education, Jammu, Additional Secretary and other senior officers of the department.

Taking strong note of the SSA fund embezzlement in the Baramulla district, the Deputy Chief Minister directed suspension of those involved.

The officers who were put under suspension include, former ZEOs Dangerpora, Ms Asifa Ara and Mohammad Shafi Wani, former Principal HSS Dangerpora Mr. Bashir Ahmad Mir, Jr. Assistant Ms Rifat Rashid, Zahoor Ahmad Shah, former I/C Headmaster MS Yamberzalwari and Maqsood Ahmad of MS Yamberzalwari. In preliminary inquiry misappropriations to the tune of over rupees seventy lacs have been established.

A fresh enquiry has been ordered to be conducted by senior officers for taking further action on the matter. Inquiries were also initiated for misappropriation of SSA funds in Zone Marwah, Assar and KGBV Boniyar, Baramulla.   

Underscoring the need of training in the department, Tara Chand said experts should be called from outside state and master trainers should be trained at national level training centers. Training for teachers both at the time of recruitment as well as during various stages of service is very important so arrangement need to be made for imparting latest training, he added.

He said fifty teachers each from Kashmir and Jammu regions should be trained as master trainers at the training institutes of national repute so that they can further impart modern and latest training to others for improving efficiency of the teacher fraternity.

The meeting took a detailed review of civil works undertaken in different schools all across the state under SSA and RMSA.

The Deputy Chief Minister expressed dissatisfaction on the pace and progress of the PWD works and directed the Secretary, Education to take up the matter with concerned for ensuring speeding up of the undertaken works. He said infrastructure for different schools is being created and no delay in this regard would be tolerated.

He directed the CEOs and ZEOs to keep three days earmarked for field visits so as to firsthand ascertain progress of works, immediate requirements and conduct academic inspections.

He said to make people and children aware about provisions under various education schemes pamphlets should be distributed and awareness be spread about various pro poor student incentives being extended by the government. He said the government provides a sum of Rs 3000 to girls passing middle level exams and Rs 5000 for matric under Beti Anmol scheme.

Underscoring on need to utilize geo-mapping in education planning, Tara Chand said that school mapping is an important planning technique which aids in distributing educational facilities across different geographical locations and helps to promote faster progress of education.

He said main objective of the mapping is to equalize educational opportunities by leveling out the existing inequalities in distribution of the facilities across the state 

Taking review of organizing tours for students, the Deputy Chief Minister directed that preference should be given to students from rural, border, backward and hilly areas as those living in these inaccessible areas get little chance to come and visit cities and other parts of the country.

He said strict monitoring of food quality being provided at schools should be done by a committee involving health officials at district levels and periodic inspections should be made to ensure hygienic food in schools.

He reviewed the progress of school mapping and directed for expediting the exercise being undertaken all across the state.

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