THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau (VACB) on Friday raided the Directorate of Public Instructions (DPI), district education offices (DEO) and assistant education offices (AEO) under the General Education Department following complaints of corruption. During the raid titled ‘Operation Jyothi’, sleuths unearthed irregularities in the appointment of aided school teachers and non-teaching staff. The Vigilance also received information that DEO and AEO offices in the state receive between 200 and 300 applications per month for various purposes (PF, Surrender, Fixation, Leave ) but only 10 per cent of them are processed in a timely manner and the remaining are put on hold for various reasons.
In addition, confidential information has been received that the aided school staff’s annual increments, increment arrears and DA arrears are being delayed and that prompt action will be taken on applications only if bribe is given through school office attendants. It is also alleged that some school managements were manipulating the number of students to create teaching posts in aided schools as per the student-teacher ratio set by the government and that some managements were creating and recruiting additional teaching posts, which is being facilitated by some officials in the DEO and AEO offices.
Besides, there has been a delay in approving leave vacancy appointments, vacancies following relocation, and post creation, by some officials for committing corruption. It was also found that the files related to medical reimbursement of employees were also being deliberately delayed.
During surprise inspections on Friday, Vigilance found that some DEOs and AEO offices in the state had not made a decision for months on files related to appointments to teaching and non-teaching posts and that officials were causing huge delays for no reason and this was to extract bribe.
Sleuths found that officials were delaying files at DEOs at Neyyattinkara, Kalpetta, Palakkad and in Thiruvananthapuram and AEOs at Vadakkancherry, Mannarkkad and Kalpetta. Vigilance officials said that the raids would be continued in the coming days in connection with illegal posting of teaching and non-teaching staff.
The raids were carried out at 24 district education offices and 30 assistant education offices selected by the state directorate of public education. According to IG H Venkatesh, who is holding the additional charge of Vigilance director, a report would be submitted to the state government for further action on the anomalies found during the raids.