Vastavam web: The Congress Sunday accused the Raman Singh government in Chhattisgarh of “ruining” education in the state and thus, committing a social and political crime, for which the people of the state would give a befitting reply to the ruling BJP. Addressing a press conference here, senior Congress leader Ajay Maken alleged that the Bharatiya Janata Party-led governments at the Centre and in Chhattisgarh were “enemies” of the Scheduled Caste (SC), Scheduled Tribe (ST) and Other Backward Classes (OBC) people and the cut in their budget was an ample proof of that.
He alleged that the future of lakhs of students was “ruined”, for which the Raman Singh government was fully responsible. “It has committed a political and social crime, for which the people of Chhattisgarh will give it a befitting reply,” the Congress leader said. He alleged that the Raman Singh government had not only turned politics into a business, but made all-out efforts to privatise education in Chhattisgarh, as a result of which education would remain an unfulfilled dream for the poor and middle-class people.
The Delhi Congress chief said the 280-per cent rise in the number of students in private schools justified the opposition party’s charge against the Raman Singh government. He claimed that 35,300 posts of principals, headmasters and teachers were lying vacant in the state, besides a reduction of Rs 300 crore in the budget for the Centre’s “Sarva Siksha Abhiyan” for the state. Maken said while educated youngsters were without jobs in Chhattisgarh due to the suppression and “anti-people” policies of the Raman Singh government, around 54,000 posts of assistant teachers and 22,644 of panchayat-level teachers were lying vacant in the state.
He alleged that these vacancies were deliberately not being filled to give a big boost to privatisation of education in Chhattisgarh. The Congress leader further claimed that the Raman Singh government had totally failed in the education sector as institutes like the ITIs had 1,582 vacant posts and in the Swami Vivekananda Technical University in Bhilai, of the 140 sanctioned posts, only five were filled.
Citing the example of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) in New Raipur, Maken said of the 156 sanctioned posts of teachers, only 111 were filled in the prestigious institution. Accusing the Narendra Modi government at the Centre of destroying the education sector, the Congress leader said in the current financial year, there was a heavy reduction in the budget for the sector, and during the BJP regime, the spending on education was reduced to only 3.6 per cent.
He alleged that there was a 45-per cent increase in the fees of educational institutions and in the scholarships for the students of SC/ST categories, there was a reduction of Rs 348 crore — the handiwork of the Modi government — which raised a big question on its attitude towards the underprivileged class.
Maken accused the BJP of always doing injustice to the SC/ST communities and OBC people, which was evident from the fact that there was an arrear of Rs 8,000 crore in the scholarships for SC students, while the arrear in the scholarships for the ST community was around Rs 3,156 crore. He also alleged that it had become a habit of the Raman Singh government not to honour its promises and to sell half-baked dreams. The Congress leader said the prime minister wanted the youth of the country to sell “pakoras”, while Singh wanted to make the youth of Chhattisgarh labourers.