College scholarship issue: MASTEK in; data compiling work gets momentum

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 25 Nov 2017 08:59:53

By Vikas Vaidya,

The Devendra Fadnavis Government has proved to be a good omen for the colleges. Last week, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had taken initiative to give 60 per cent of the amount of scholarship to the colleges. Now, there is another good news for the colleges. The deal between Maharashtra’s Social Justice Department and MASTEK company went well.

MASTEK was reappointed. The compilation of data related to scholarship would get momentum now. The Social Justice Department of Maharashtra found itself in trouble as it failed to retrieve data transfered by MASTEK, the company which was maintaining the scholarship details coming under the ambit of Social Justice Department. According to reliable sources, the company did not want to transfer data as it did not get the payment from Government and that is why it did not continue the contract too. ‘The Hitavada’ has been continuously publishing reports related to non-receipt of scholarships. The newspaper also brought to fore the crisis that arose when MASTEK refused to continue the contract.

The procedure of scholarship conducted was not functioning since April 30. The website was being handled by MASTEK company whose contract came to an end on April 30. As over Rs 100 crore pending with Government against the scholarship to be paid to students of reserved category, the educational institutes especially engineering colleges are facing financial crunch. Most of the colleges are unable to pay the salaries of their employees.

The website is part of Social Justice Department. The procedure like submission of applications by students, colleges is done on this website. The bills of the scholarship too are generated on this website. How much scholarship distributed is displayed on this website so that everybody can see it. The process of disbursement of scholarship to SC, ST, VJNT, OBC and others is also conducted through this website. The Social Justice Department distribute the scholarship amount of about 1.54 lakh students of Nagpur district every year. This year it could distribute the scholarship worth Rs 90 crore of 89,000 students for the year 2016-17.

The scholarship of 64,000 students amounting to Rs 70 crore is pending. Some Rs 40 crore of the year 2015-16 is yet not distributed. The Department tried to conduct the process manually but it is already facing manpower crunch. A senior office said that the verification had become tougher. If everything is to be checked in a proper manner then it would take time.

Obstacles in scholarship distribution

Social Welfare Department running short of staff

Colleges don’t submit the applications of reserved category students to Social Welfare Department in time.

Fee Regulatory Authority delays the declaration of fee structure of colleges

Since colleges fail to submit applications with Social Welfare Department in time due to various reasons, Department can not give the estimation to Finance Department in the stipulated time.

Because of non-receipt of estimation from Social Welfare Department, Finance department do not send amount and it delays the distribution of scholarship to every student.

Students too play gimmick with colleges and Government by furnishing false details and get caught during scrutiny.