Claiming that the Chief Ministers pet project has flopped,derailed and failed to impart quality education to poor students in rural areas,the Congress today demanded a special audit by Comptroller Auditor General (CAG) and a white paper on the functioning of all Adarsh schools in Punjab.
Addressing a Press conference the Punjab Congress spokesman Sukhpal Khaira alleged malfunctioning and gross financial embezzlement in over two dozen Adarsh schools of Punjab. Quoting from information recieved under the RTI Act,he said,All private managements,except five Adarsh schools managed by the Bharti group,are embezzling,frauding and endangering the future of poor school children, he said.
Displaying the audit report of an Adarsh school in Hardasa village of Ferozpur,managed by Baba Ishar Singh Educational Society under the PPP mode,he said the society appointed a managing director and a coordinator at salaries of Rs 50,000 and Rs 10,000 per month respectively but they were given no tasks. The government paid Rs 8,35,000 as salary to 59 teachers through bank accounts but a sum of Rs 5,000 in cash was collected back from each teacher per month in lieu of faculty development programme and laptop charges. As per the audit report,five clerks are being paid Rs 10,000 per month even though there is no requirement for so many clerks in view of the work load. While Rs 30,000 per month is shown as salary for accounting staff,no accounts are maintained at the school premises. A PRO and and a doctor were being paid monthly wages without any assigned work. No doctor visited the school, he added.
Although the primary objective of Adarsh schools is to provide free quality education,students were being forced to pay Rs 3,100 as uniform and books charges and Rs 100 to 300 as transportation charges,despite the fact that the schools receive Rs 1,680 per student per month from the government for this purpose. A sum of Rs 3,51,897 is shown as diesel expenses for June when the school is closed for summer vacations,Khaira said.
Khaira alleged that similar shocking disclosures have been made in an inquiry report by a principal in Manawan Adarsh school in Moga district also.
The Punjab and Haryana High Court had on July 9 directed the DGSE to inquire into the allegations and sought a detailed report within two months.