The Finance department’s party pooper attitude has put 18 polytechnic colleges sanctioned in 2012 in jeopardy as the department has declined to sanction the proposal for the creation of 720 teaching posts in these colleges citing budgetary constraints.
As per sources in the administration, the proposal submitted by the Technical Education department in 2012 was kept in abeyance by the Finance department for six years before being put into the “not-sanctioned” category recently.
Ironically, the campuses of the 18 polytechnic colleges have been built over the years, leaving one wondrous as to who would teach the students in the new buildings.
To add the icing on the dilapidated education sector cake, the two subsequent governments in the State sat on the issue despite both the cabinets being apprised about the issue.
“The Finance department did put the proposal before the cabinets of National Conference-Congress and Peoples Democratic Party-Bharatiya Janata Party governments but both the governments ignored the issue while the buildings were being built,” an official in the Finance department, wishing anonymity, said.
“Over the years, the Finance department kept the issue on the backburner, leading to the present scenario where buildings are tangible while teachers will be conspicuously absent,” the official said.
Sanctioned under the 2012 Submission of Polytechnics scheme of the Government of India, 18 new polytechnics came up in 18 districts of the State except for Jammu, Srinagar, Leh and Kargil, which already have functioning polytechnic colleges.
Till date, Rs 7 crore have been spent on building the college campuses for these 18 new polytechnic colleges.
In 2012, the Government of India had sanctioned Rs 8 crore for carrying out civil works for the colleges out of which Rs 4.30 crore was sanctioned for procurement of machinery and other equipment for the colleges.
Subsequently, the State government also sanctioned Rs 5 crore for establishment of these colleges.
Currently, among the 18 new Polytechnics, the Polytechnic colleges at Anantnag, Budgam, Ganderbal, Kulgam, Reasi, Samba and Kathua have already been shifted to their campuses while construction work of eight polytechnics - Kupwara, Baramulla, Bandipora, Shopian, Ramban, Doda Kishtwar and Udhampur – was under progress.
The polytechnic sector has already been facing the brunt of the ill-timed examination schedule of the Board of Professional Entrance Examination (BOPEE), with enrolment going down by 39 percent in 2018 in comparison to the figures in 2017.
The Technical Education department’s plan to advertise 324 non-teaching posts for these colleges on ‘outsource basis’ is also being recapitulated as the Technical Education department requires substantial financial support for these posts as well.