Almost all Zilla Parishad (ZP) schools in the state have not received their non-salary grant for two years. Reason? ZPs have not been conducting their yearly grant assessment,with some not assessing for more than a decade,and Pune unfortunately is one among them.
The assessment of non-salary grants has not taken place in several ZPs for many years. There are about Rs 30-40 crore remaining with some ZPs. We have taken cognizance of the issue, said Mahavir Mane,Director,Primary Education in the state.
A high-power panel was set up and it was decided a committee consisting of Regional Deputy Director,primary education and the Accounts Officer will conduct the grant assessment of all schools under ZP in a particular region, Mane said.
Every school gets two types of grants salary grants and non salary grants.
Salary grants give out salaries and pensions of the staff. Non-salary grants,which is a maximum of 4 per cent of the total salary grant,is given out to the school for school maintenance,purchases etc. It is up to the school to use this amount and then return the remaining amount after use.
There are 33 ZPs in the state,of which only three ZPs have completed their assessment.
Latur,Wardha and Bhandara are the three ZPs that have completed their assessment.
Pune ZP has not completed its assessment since 2001-02,said education department officials. Pune receives a non-salary grant of Rs 1 crore. We have been conducting assessment in Pune too,which will be over in 2 months, a senior official said on condition of anonymity.
The state government had terminated the non-salary grant given to schools as a means to urge them to assess the already taken grants. Although the government has been asking the ZPs to do it for 4-5 years,the non issue of non-salary grants in the last two years seems to have worked. The assessment process has sped up and by the end of this year,the assessment of all ZPs will be over, a senior education department official who did not wish to be named said.
Some Zilla Parishad schools in state did not pay electricity bills
Due to the non issue of non-salary grants,some ZP schools in the state were not able to pay their electricity bills leading the electricity board to sever their connection. It has come to our notice that due to non-salary grants,some ZP schools in the state had to forgo their electricity connection. But soon the assessment process will be over and the connection will be restored, said Mahavir Mane,Director,Primary Education in the state. But the problem doesnt end there as the schools which get commercial electricity connection are demanding a domestic connection for them. Last year,the ZP officials in a meeting with Deputy Chief Minister,asked for a change of electricity connection of ZP schools. But talks failed as the electricity board officials refused to budge, a senior education department official said.