NEW DELHI: The government has a poor track record of setting up Aklavya model residential schools (EMRS) in states, a standing committee has observed. The Centre had earlier announced that every block with more than 50 per cent scheduled tribe population and at least 20,000 tribal persons would have an EMRS by 2022.
Despite the sanctioning of over 90 schools in the states of Jharkhand, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Tripura, the number of functional EMRS was 22, the committee found while analysing the state-wise data. Despite the sanctioning of 15 EMRS in Meghalaya — a scheduled tribe concentrated state, not one school was set up there, the panel observed. “The progress in non-scheduled tribe concentrated areas also appear to be no way different,” said the panel.
The committee has urged the Ministry of Tribal Affairs to be innovative in tackling procedural issues such as acquiring land, obtaining approvals which hinder the achievements of setting up the sanctioned number of schools. The panel has also questioned zero disbursements to some states when it came to giving out pre-matric scholarship to ST students. On post-matric scholarships, the committee observed that in the case of Meghalaya, though funds were released for the year 2018-19, the number of beneficiaries shown is zero. The panel asked the ministry to clarify why despite disbursal of the amounts to the state, the beneficiaries were shown as zero.