Jammu, December 04: The orders for the release of Rs 459 crore for the state has been issued by the Human Resource development Ministry. The decision of release of funds is made after the Union Finance Ministry approved 90:10 share under Sarav Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) for three Himalayan States.
As per reported in a local daily, the decision was taken by the Union HRD Minister, Smriti Irani after Priya Sethi, the Minister of State for Education, Culture and Information from J&K called on Thursday and reported that the teachers working under SSA including the Rehbar-e-Taleem teachers are not given salaries for last seven months now.
Acting upon the aggrieved issue reported by Priya Sethi, Mrs Irani immediately made the decision to release of Rs 459 crore to the State of J&K under the scheme so that salaries of the SSA teachers are released without any further delay. The sources said that the release of funds will be a major relief to all the teachers working under SSA and ReT in the state since with the non-payment of salaries some of them were at the verge of starvation.
The official reports claims that there are over 45,000 teachers in the state of Jammu and Kashmir working under SSA. Out of them over 20,000 teachers are working in Kashmir division while over 25,000 teachers are in Jammu region. All of these were not paid for the last seven months.
Sources said the decision for release of funds was taken by Union HRD Ministry after the Finance Ministry approved the funding pattern for three Himalayan States including J&K, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand by issuing a clarification to previous order.
The ministry has clarified under the scheme that that the names of the Himalayan States for whom the revised funding pattern of the Centrally Sponsored Schemes has been fixed at 90:10 are J&K, HP and Uttarakhand. The scheme has been approved by the Union Finance Ministry. Also, it has been intimated to the States that the revised pattern of sharing funding has been fixed at 90:10 for Himalayan States.
Earlier, the funding pattern was 65: 35 and State Government was pressing hard to Centre to convert it into 90:10 i.e the State will pay only 10 percent funding under the scheme while 90 percent will be paid by the Centre, sources said.
However, the State which was facing a financial crunch and was unable even to deposit Rs 41 crore under its share of the funding for salaries of SSA teachers with the result the Centre had blocked funding which it was supposed to pay under earlier 65: 35 share basis, sources said. The teachers were not paid salary because of that and they have threatened to go on a state wide agitation if the salaries were not released immediately.
In its guidelines, Union Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry, the State has to utilize its 35 percent share first and only then Centre will release remaining 65 percent share, sources added.
Image Courtesy – India Today