BANGALORE: The Social Welfare Department which provides scholarships for college students and for rankholders belonging to Schedule Castes (SC) has delayed the grants for the current year.
The department provides scholarships for merit and rank holders in PU board examination. Post-Matric scholarships are also sanctioned to SC students studying various courses in recognised colleges and universities after SSLC.
According to the data obtained by the Express through Right to Information (RTI) from the Department of Social Welfare, there are 2.1 lakh beneficiaries across the State, for whom `1058.41 lakh was allocated in 2011-12 but only 44 per cent of the total amount allocated has been utilised so far.
The rest of the sanctioned amount will lapse if not utilised before the end of the financial year. If not, they have apply for the amount afresh, according to rules.
However, the department officials claimed that most of the students are not dependent on the scholarship money and it would not affect their future studies.
“We have sent the funds to respective Pre-University Board officials at the district level. But the students are not dependent on the scholarship money for their future studies. It is just Rs 5,000,” Commissioner of Social Welfare Department Naveen Raj Singh gave details to the Express.
In the meantime, M Shivanna, Member of the National Schedule Caste and Scheduled Tribe Commission, said, “To overcome this inordinate delay, we have initiated a project to transfer funds online to students’ accounts. This will be implemented from next year. To avoid serious action, directions have been given to use the funds earmarked for the welfare of the student belonging to Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.”