Centre releases Rs309 crore dues to unaided colleges - ECAS Punjab

Centre releases Rs309 crore dues to unaided colleges

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Rajmeet Singh

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 6

To support unaided colleges facing the threat of closure amid the Covid-19 lockdown, the Union Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment has released Rs309 crore dues to the state under the scholarship scheme for 2015-16 and 2016-17.

More than 3 lakh students each were enrolled during these two financial years. The amount includes the maintenance allowance paid to students and the fee paid to colleges. Sources say that of the Rs309 crore, Rs160 crore was under the head "maintenance allowance" and the remaining would go colleges. The amount, released in three instalments, would be disbursed soon, said officials in the Social Welfare Department.

As per the guidelines of the scheme, Rs1,200 to Rs5,400 is paid as maintenance allowance per annum to each student and fee varying between Rs5,000 and Rs50,000 is paid per annum per student to the college. The maintenance allowance and fee depends on the course opted by students.

Largely dependent on the enrolment of Scheduled Caste (SC) students under the SC post-matric scholarship scheme, the unaided colleges have not paid salaries to more than one lakh teaching and non-teaching staff for seven months. The college managements recently expressed their inability to pay salaries during the lockdown as well.

They attribute their poor financial condition due to the non-receipt of Rs1,850 crore dues under the scheme for the past four years from the Centre and the state government.


FEDERATION SEEKS FUNDS TO PAY SALARIES

The Federation of Self-Financing Technical Institutions (FSFTI) expressed its concern on the circular issued recently by the All-India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), New Delhi, directing all technical institutions in the country to pay salaries to the staff and not to charge fee from students during the lockdown. Dr Anshu Kataria, president, FSFTI, urged the AICTE to immediately release endowment funds, FDRs and security deposits to the colleges.



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