15% school students bunk video census

The three-day-long video census of government-aided schools in the state concluded yesterday. The deputy collector, aided by the local tahsildars and other government officials, successfully surveyed for 137 and 130 government-aided schools on Monday and Tuesday respectively in the city proper. The target for the three-day census was 810 schools in the city.

While 85 per cent of the total students were present for counting on Monday, the number went up by a negligible one per cent on Tuesday. In the suburbs, 395 teams surveyed a total of 567 schools on Monday and Tuesday. According to numbers declared till Tuesday, 2,33,719 of the 2,59,015 registered students were present for the census. Till late last night, the officials were still merging the numbers obtained yesterday, which was the final day of the census.

The decision to carry out the first-ever student census in the state was taken after a government assessment revealed that officials at state-aided schools in Nanded had siphoned off crores, after showing bogus records of 14,000 non-existent students.

Chandrashekar Oak, collector of Mumbai, said, "Our teams surveyed 137 schools on the first day of the census, during which 85 per cent students were present. Our officials were working till 12.30 am to merge the obtained data, as they have to meet the October 5 deadline. Everything went off smoothly." Nirmal Kumar Deshmukh, collector of Mumbai (suburban), said, "About 567 schools were covered by our teams on the first two days.

The rest will be surveyed today. The first two days were easy."

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