NEW DELHI: Over 300 senior officials of Central government of the rank of director and deputy secretary have have been dispatched to states for "spot inspection" of toilets in schools and they have been asked to submit the report by next week. Sources said the step has been taken since the Prime Minister is miffed at the slow progress in building toilets in schools.
Sources said each 'observer' will visit 15 schools in urban areas and 10 in rural areas in different states to verify whether toilets have actually been built with water supply. The officials will carry out random checks and meet the deputy commissioners of the districts concerned to take an overall review of the progress made in construction of toilets. They have to give details of the separate toilets built for boys and girls in the schools they inspect.
"The teams will come with reports of physical infrastructure, their maintenance and who is actually using these facilities besides utilization of funds. They will give suggestions based on their on the spot assessment," said a government official.
Addressing the nation on the Indepedence Day last year, PM Narendra Modi had said, "There should be separate toilets for girls. Next year, when we stand here, every school should have toilets for girls and boys." Moreover, he had urged all parliamentarians to invest from their constituency funds on building toilets in every school.
The observers have also been directed to look at the implementation of mid-day meal scheme, Sarv Siksha Abhiyaan and Rashtriya Madhyamik Siksha Abhiyaan.
INDIAN EXPRESS, JUL 08, 2015
Universities to now have a common academic calendar
Vinod Tawde says will form four-member panel to review academic timetables every three months; Maharashtra Universities Act to be amended.
The education minister Vinod Tawde took a review of the academic timetable of all state universities and instructed the V-Cs to keep uniformity
Dipti Singh Universities across the state will now have a common academic calendar. Higher and Technical Education Minister Vinod Tawde, who met vice-chancellors of all state universities here Monday, said he would form a committee of four members to work out a common academic calendar to avoid confusion and disparity in admission season of different universities in state.
This would however also mean that exams, admissions and various other academic events in all state universities and their affiliated colleges will be scheduled at the same time.
Tawde took a review of the academic timetable of all state universities and instructed the V-Cs to keep uniformity in the timetable. “Dates of admission, first day of college, examination timetable and various programmes organised by the university should be announced on the very first day of college. Also, all universities should keep similarity in timetable for uniformity. We found that when results of one university is not announced, the other university begins its admission process. This leads to students not being able to take admission in other universities,” Tawde said.
The higher education department will form a four-member committee, which will review the timetable every three months. The government has also decided to amend the Maharashtra Universities Act 1994. The proposed amendment will also affect senate elections.
Meanwhile, Mumbai University is already in the process of conducting its senate elections. “The amended Act will be tabled in the winter session. Meanwhile, we have asked MU authorities to defer the upcoming senate elections to avoid any chaos once the process of formation of university senate is finalised,” said Tawde.
If the senate elections are deferred, it means the term of current senate will be extended by one year. Universities have also been asked to appoint a nodal officer to look after work between university and state government departments. According to Tawde, there is no need for a V-C to come to Mantralaya and wait for hours to meet officials. “Why should a Vice-Chancellor come to Mantralaya when an official can be appointed to look into these issues. V-Cs should rather concentrate on academic work,” he said.
The process for constituting the Fifth Finance Commission in Delhi has been initiated with a proposal sent to the Delhi Government’s Urban Development Department, while Rs.855.31 crore were released to the three Municipal Corporations of the Capital in accordance with the Fourth Finance Commission’s recommendations.
Making these submissions before a Division Bench of the Delhi High Court on Thursday, the Aam Aadmi Party Government denied that it was neglecting the civic bodies and affirmed that the amount released to them till last month was more than what was paid during the previous year.
In an affidavit filed before the Bench, comprising Chief Justice G. Rohini and Justice Jayant Nath, the Delhi Government said the process for constituting the Fifth Finance Commission would be completed within four months.
The Urban Development Department had obtained the views of all stakeholders and would take further steps for implementing the Fourth Finance Commission's recommendations after receiving appropriate orders from the competent authority, stated the affidavit. The Court was hearing a PIL filed by a non-government organisation, Campaign for People's Participation in Development Planning, seeking directions to the Delhi Government to immediately release adequate funds to municipal bodies to enable them to perform their functions. The Bench had on June 29 pulled up the AAP Government for delaying the constitution of the Fifth Finance Commission and not implementing the Fourth Finance Commission's recommendations.
The Delhi Government said it was considering the steps for increasing the revenue of the municipalities and would release funds to them from time to time as per the budget estimates. It denied the petitioner's allegation that it was trying to usurp powers and functions of the municipal bodies. The Court posted the matter for further hearing on August 6 after asking the Delhi Government to submit its response to two applications seeking its removal as a respondent in the case and seeking directions for restraining the Lieutenant-Governor from utilising the Capital’s consolidated fund till the share of municipalities was disbursed from it.
The Bench had on June 29 pulled up the AAP Government for delaying the constitution of the commission