The Assam Tea Tribes Students’ Association (ATTSA) on Saturday alleged anomalies in providing scholarship to students in several districts.
ATTSA central committee president Dhiraj Gowala, general secretary Pawan Beida and its literature and education secretary Sanjoy Digal in a statement alleged that many deserving students who had applied for benefits under schemes like the Simon Singh Haro Special Education Scholarship, matric and pre-matric scholarships and Dayal Das Panika Self-Employment Scheme, under the directorate of tea tribes welfare, for 2019-20, have been deprived.
The leaders blamed district-level officers for non-submission of application forms in due time for which many students were left out. They also demanded an immediate step to cut out names of alleged non-tea tribes’ students listed under the schemes.
ATTSA also demanded release of scholarship to deprived students studying technical courses in several colleges and universities, and in Gauhati Medical College and Hospital. They demanded constitution of a new beneficiary selection committee after transferring lower division assistants working for many years in the same district.
They alleged that many youths from the same family were benefiting from the self-employment scheme, depriving genuine beneficiaries.
The leaders demanded the government to solve the problems and appealed to the directorate to release the money for the genuine beneficiaries yet to get the benefits.
Chairman of Dibrugarh district-level tea tribes beneficiary selection committee Sushil Tassa denied allegations of anomalies in releasing funds for schemes. He said 2,700 students benefited from various schemes though the government had provided a target of 2,200 in the district during 2019-20.
He suspected that more than one youth from the same family could have been selected under the self-employment scheme but he had no knowledge about the issue. He also said no non-tea tribes’ beneficiary had been selected for the scholarship. “We have sent all eligible applications with necessary testimonials in time and did not collect any application form after the last date,” he said.
On the other hand, Duliajan legislator Terosh Gowala said the allegations made by ATTSA should be inquired into by higher officials.
Tingrai circle secretary of Assam Chah Mazdoor Sangha, Bansilal Sahu, said not a single tea tribes student of Dibrugarh University and Assam Medical College and Hospital benefited from the schemes. Sahu claimed the anomalies mainly occurred in Dibrugarh and Jorhat districts.