Rs 64-cr meant for poor students not disbursed: Khaira
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Congress leader and former MLA, Sukhpal Singh Khaira, on Saturday alleged that the incumbent government had robbed its poor students of over Rs 64 crore allocated by the Central government for scholarships to minority students.
Addressing a press conference, Khaira produced documents obtained by an activist from the Punjab government under the Right to Information (RTI). According to a reply by the Directorate of Scheduled Castes and Backward classes welfare, the central government had allocated Rs 87.05 crore for scholarships to minority students for the academic year 2011-2012. However, only Rs 22.66 crore has been disbursed.
Of the Rs 87 crore, Rs 39.42 crore were to be disbursed for post-matric scholarships, Rs 8.65 crore for merit-cum-means based scholarships (which has not bee uitilised), and Rs 39.98 crore for pre-matric scholarships for which the entire amount is lying un-utilised.
Khaira said "Although the academic session of 2011-12 ended long back, the refusal of Punjab government to pay legitimate dues of Rs 64.39 crore amounts to nothing but depriving and infringing on the rights of poor, underprivileged deserving students."
"By denying minority students their due, the SAD-BJP government has clearly proved that its priority are elite schools like the Lawrence school of Sanawar, Himachal Pradesh, where children belonging to the upper strata of the society study and not the poor," he added.
Khaira demanded that criminal action should be taken against those responsible for this "gross financial negligence". He also said that the government should be asked to issue a white paper on the allocation of scholarships for the previous tenure and that if this is not done he would approach the Punjab and Haryana High Court.
'Cannot spare Badals and gun for Amarinder'
Insisting that he has decided not to indulge in 'negative politics', Khaira, who had been demanding removal of Captain Amarinder as PPCC chief, on Saturday, said that he will smilingly accept the decision of the high command. "We have presented our views, now it is for the high command to decide. It will be good if he (Captain) is removed however even if the high command decides otherwise, I will continue fighting for the party. I cannot spare Badals and gun for Amarinder."
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