Soon, smartphones for 1.73 lakh school students - ECAS Punjab

Soon, smartphones for 1.73 lakh school students

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Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 5

The state Cabinet today paved way for the distribution of 1.73 lakh smartphones among the students of government schools. The first lot of 50,000 phones will be given to students who will be appearing for Class XII examinations this year through the online system amid the Covid pandemic.

Cabinet decisions

  • The Cabinet gave its approval to the release of Rs1,388 crore grant-in-aid to panchayati raj institutions in the state.
  • It also gave the nod to the release of Rs1,046 crore to ramp up civic infrastructure in 167 urban local bodies under the Punjab Urban Environment Improvement Programme.

The Chief Minister has already ruled out any Chinese connection of the company, Lava, from which the phones are being procured. The distribution of the first batch of 50,000 phones, which has already been received by the state government, will begin shortly. The phones will have a touchscreen, camera and preloaded government applications like e-Sewa app with content related to Classes XI and XII, as approved by Department of School Education. The second batch will arrive soon and the entire distribution process will be completed by November this year.

The Cabinet noted that four months of the academic year 2020-21 had already lapsed without regular on-campus classes. While private schools shifted to online classes, the students of government schools faced a competitive disadvantage, especially those studying in Class XII. Though it was initially decided that the first batch of smartphones would be given to girls, Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh today said both boys and girls of Class XII of government schools, who do not have smartphones to access online classes, would be provided the same. This, he said, was necessary to ensure that such students did not suffer in times of the pandemic due to lack of access to education.

While extending the Ayushman Bharat Sarbat Sehat Bima Yojana for one year, the Cabinet decided to bring government employees/pensioners and employees of non-government organised sectors, including private sector/boards and corporations, into its fold

The Cabinet gave its approval to the release of Rs 1,388 crore grant-in-aid to the panchayati raj institutions. It also gave the nod to release Rs 1,046 crore to ramp up civic infrastructure in 167 urban local bodies under the Punjab Urban Environment Improvement Programme. The Cabinet approved a four-year strategic action plan (2019-23) and annual action plan (2019-20) of six departments, taking the total number of state departments with such plans in place to 24.

To come with preloaded govt apps

  • The first lot of 50,000 phones will be given to students who will be appearing for Class XII examinations this year through the online system amid the Covid pandemic.
  • The Chief Minister has already ruled out any Chinese connection of the company, Lava, from which the phones are being procured.
  • The phones will have a touchscreen, camera and pre-loaded government applications like e-Sewa app with content related to Classes XI and XII, as approved by Department of School Education.


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