Despite protests from parents, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar is standing firm and made it clear that the government will not compromise on the criteria essential to benefit from the scheme. “What is the use of spending so much money if children don’t go to school?” he said.
Education Minister PK Shahi echoed the view. “The government is not going to make any change on the attendance issue. Only those students will be eligible for funds (to buy cycle and uniform), who have at least 75 per cent attendance between April and September 2012,” Shahi said.
Under the scheme, Rs700 is given to students to buy school uniform and Rs 2,500 for a cycle. In over a dozen districts, students and their parents, after being denied the cash, blocked roads and burnt tyres. In some places they ransacked the offices of the schools.