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No money to upgrade schools, says Tawde

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Congress-NCP government’s 2014 scheme scrapped

Maharashtra’s Education Department has said that it cannot afford to provide ₹10 crore promised to upgrade 100 schools, as the government’s financial condition is not sound.

Education Minister Vinod Tawde, while replying to a point of propriety raised by Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) MLC Hemant Takle, has said that the State has scrapped the scheme that promised the funds.

The Congress-NCP government had announced a scheme on March 3, 2014, under which 100 schools active since the pre-Independence era were to be provided ₹10 lakh each, subject to certain criteria.

On August 10, during the concluded monsoon session of the State Legislature, Mr. Takle had raised a point of propriety seeking details of the scheme and the names of schools to which the money had been distributed.

Mr. Tawde’s reply said, “The decision was taken without prior permission from the Finance Department … Considering the financial condition of the State, economical resources, the State’s needs and their priority, it will not be possible to make available ₹10 crore for 100 schools. Hence, the government decision dated March 3, 2014, was cancelled on July 5, 2017.”

Mr. Takle criticised the State’s priorities. “This is the financial situation of the State, where it cannot spend even ₹10 crore on education but readily spends crores on advertising to celebrate its completion of three years,” he said.

Facing difficulties

The State has been reeling under financial pressure. The farm loan waiver worth ₹34,000 crore is far from being completed, and government employees are waiting for the implementation of the Pay Commission recommendations. The Public Works Department has sought help from financial institutions for construction of roads, and ambitious projects like the Mumbai-Nagpur super expressway and Mumbai’s coastal road need funding. Maharashtra will also have to bear the part of the loan for the Mumbai-Ahemadabad bullet train.


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