New Delhi, August 28. Union HRD minister Dr. Ramesh Pokhriyal launched a web portal named Shagun, which links over 1.5 million schools countrywide to provide and exchange information on school education. The schools have been geo-tagged and all data provided by them can be accessed through this portal. “The progress of the country is dependent on education and the foundation of education needs to be solid. Shagun is an important initiative and through this portal, more than 2.3 lakh educational websites can be integrated,” explained the minister.
According to HRD ministry officials, information uploaded on the portal will be subject to third-party verification and the websites of 1,200 Kendriya Vidyalayas, 600 Navodaya Vidyalayas, 18,000 CBSE-affiliated schools, 30 SCERTs and 19,000 organisations affiliated with the National Council for Teacher Education among others, are integrated with the portal.
Ghaziabad, August 3. An FIR (first information report) has been registered against the chairman of an educational trust, his son and three others for allegedly cheating Rungta Irrigation Ltd, a Delhi-based company, of Rs.8.6 crore, senior superintendent of police Sudhir Kumar Singh informed the media. The complaint was lodged by Tarun Kumar Magotia, the company’s chairman.
D.P. Mahalingam, chairman of the Maharaji Educational Trust which runs the Ghaziabad-based Santosh Medical College, his son Santosh and three others have been booked for breach of trust and cheating. In his complaint, Magotia alleged that Mahalingam and his son together with their associates had cheated his company of Rs.8.6 crore. The accused abused Magotia and threatened to kill him after he made repeated requests for repayment of a loan, he added in his complaint.
Centennial school goes co-ed
Patna, August 4. Addressing a function organised to mark the centenary celebrations of the Rajendra Prasad Singh High School named after the eponymous freedom fighter, chief minister Nitish Kumar announced that the all-boys school will offer admission to girl children in the academic year 2020-21.
Citing the reason for the high school’s transformation into a co-ed institution, the chief minister said he did not believe in segregating boys and girls at the school level.
Referring to the freedom fighter after whom the school is named, he said: “To pay our respects to the man who attained martyrdom at such a young age, we have decided to install his statue within the school premises. Moreover, the large open space here will be converted into a stadium named after him.”
Education ministry fraud
Bikaner, August 4. A clerical employee of the state government’s education ministry was remanded to judicial custody for allegedly misappropriating Rs.35 crore from the ministry. Om Prakash Sharma, the accused, who worked in the office of a chief block education officer in Sri Ganganagar, surrendered before the court after being on the run for several days, police said.
Sharma allegedly transferred Rs.35 crore to the bank accounts of his relatives and friends by showing 172 “fake retired employees” in government records and claimed their earned leave benefits, says a police statement.
Strong disciplinary action
Bhubaneswar, August 10. Odisha governor Ganeshi Lal sanctioned disciplinary action against three professors of the Veer Surendra Sai University of Technology (VSSUT) for allegedly leading a protest to oust its vice chancellor. The governor, who is ex-officio chancellor of the university, gave his consent based on the recommendation of the state’s skill development and technical education ministry.
He also approved another proposal to issue show-cause notices to 15 other faculty members on disciplinary grounds. These faculty members were also accused of launching a protest against vice chancellor Atal Choudhuri, demanding his ouster. The academics allege that no developmental work has been completed at the institute since Choudhuri took charge as VC in January 2018.
Tribal schools opt for English
Yavatmal, August 30. Addressing a press conference, Ashok Uikey, Maharashtra’s tribal development minister, said government-run ashram schools for tribal children statewide, will be converted into English-medium institutions. Currently, the tribal development ministry runs 502 ashram shalas where tribal students are provided Marathi-medium education based on the curriculum prescribed by the Maharashtra State Education Board.
“In the first phase, 50 government-run ashram shalas will be converted into English-medium primary schools. The government will rope in qualified teachers from reputed private schools for the purpose,” said Uikey.
Paromita Sengupta with bureau inputs