Lakhs of students across the state who have seen their names appear on the merit lists of class IV and class VII scholarship exams in the last three years and are still waiting for the prize money will likely get their just deserts soon. State education directorate has recently developed a software to settle all the pending claims of mid school, high school and pre-matric scholarships, and May 31 is the deadline.
“We launched the computer program in January. Due to this software we are getting district and even taluka-level information about exactly how many scholarship claims have not been settled and the reasons behind it,” said Sunil Magar, joint director (primary education).
Though lakhs of claims are unsettled, till now there was no mechanism to find the exact cause of pendency. Now it is mandatory on every school to provide online information of students eligible for scholarships.
Kids who appeared in the merit list of class IV scholarship exams gets Rs 100 per month for the next three years. Similarly a meritorious class VII student receives Rs 150 per month till completing SSC. Besides these rewards, the state government also provides pre-matric scholarship to students belonging to minority community. Children studying in class I to X get Rs 1,000 per year as pre-matric scholarship.
Till 2010 the scholarship funds were allotted to schools and they were expected to distribute it among the students. After observing many malpractices in this traditional approach, in 2010 the government started crediting scholarship directly to the students’ bank accounts.
“Even after repeated directions from the government many schools, especially in rural areas, were passive about opening bank accounts for pupils. But now due to this software, we are getting minute details about the status of the accounts,” told Magar.
Total number of unsettled scholarship cases from 2009-2012 for class IV and class VII students between 2009 is 1.66 lakh. Because of the newly launched program, since Januay this year, persistent proceedings by state education directorate have ensured that 1.44 lakh such students now have bank accounts.
“The remaining kids will get their accounts in the next fortnight,” claimed Magar. However, the pendency figure is considerable in pre-matric scholarship. Out of 3.78 lakh potential beneficiaries only 2.73 lakh have got bank accounts.
Eyes on target
The scholarship exam results for class IV and VII students for this year are expected on May 1. “We have directed all schools across the state that they will have to open bank accounts of students who appear in the merit list by October. Once this is done, we can complete the task of crediting the money before March 31 next year,” explained Magar.
Rs 1.66 L Number of unsettled scholarship cases from 2009-2012 for class IV and class VII students