As many as 64,641 students enrolled in Delhi government schools do not have a bank account, which is necessary to receive funds from various welfare schemes, official documents show. As per government documents, the capital has 15,33,750 students enrolled in its 1,100 schools, of which about 4.2% do not have bank accounts. In 19,869 cases, some, but not all details are available with the government.
Funds from different schemes are supposed to be transferred by the Directorate of Education (DoE) to the bank accounts of children, and schools have to assist students and parents in creating the accounts.
“It can be opened in any bank. The school is responsible… A passport-sized photograph, a copy of the Aadhaar card and a letter from the school is all that is required to make a bank account. If a child has no bank account, he will not get the money,” said A K Jha, principal of Sarvodaya Co-ed Vidyalaya in Rohini’s Sector 8.
A few years ago, schools used to distribute cash to students, but that stopped after bank accounts were opened.
Children are supposed to be provided funds for uniforms and stationery, with the amount depending upon the class they are in. For instance, for uniforms, government school students of classes XI and XII get around Rs 1,400; Class X students receive around Rs 1,100, while junior classes get around Rs 800. Students from classes IX-XII are also given money for books.
There are various other schemes, catering to Muslim students and students belonging to scheduled castes and scheduled tribes, along with merit scholarships, that mandate providing money to students.
Asked about the problems in making bank accounts, another school principal said, “Sometimes, a child does not have an Aadhaar card, so it becomes problematic.”
But government data shows only 21,603 students enrolled in Delhi government schools are without Aadhaar.
The Directorate of Education has now asked the district education officers to tackle the issue on a “mission mode”, call parents and ask them to open bank accounts, so transactions can take place.
The DoE Director could not be reached for a comment.