Yaas and Covid pose hurdle to schoolkid bank account details
An association of heads of higher secondary schools in Bengal has requested the state government to extend the deadline of uploading bank account details of over 8 lakh students of Class XII as many don’t have bank accounts that they need to avail the state government aid of Rs 10,000 to buy tabs or smartphones for online classes.
The state had earlier asked school authorities to upload student bank account details by Wednesday.
According to sources, the heads of nearly 6,000 high schools in Bengal could upload bank account details of 5,20,687 of a total of 8,14,687 students of Class XII till now.
Advanced Society for Headmasters and Headmistresses (ASFHM), which has written to the state for an extension, has cited valid reasons apart from students not having bank accounts.
“In many districts, students are facing a tough time to open accounts as many banks are not ready to open zero balance accounts and families of students can’t arrange Rs 1,000 to open bank accounts amid Covid-19 pandemic. In Yaas-hit districts, many students have lost identification documents as their homes collapsed,” said Chandan Maiti, the general secretary of ASFHM. “Also, furnishing bank account details of all students by Wednesday is a tall order with admissions to Class XII on till July 15.”
Sources in Nabanna said as the aid for students is a pet project of chief minister Mamata Banerjee, she would not like any snags to undermine it.
“The state can increase the deadline by a couple of weeks to ensure students get tabs before schools start online classes, at least for Class X and XII students, which is the prime focus of the government,” said a senior government official.
Sources said heads of schools in rural and remote areas in Yaas-hit South 24-Parganas, East Midnapore and West Midnapore are facing a tougher time getting bank accounts of students made.
In East Midnapore, where the number of Class XII students is around 53,000, bank account details are not available for around 23,000 students. In South 24 Parganas bank details are not available for around 46,000 out of 73,380 students. In West Midnapore, bank details are yet to be updated for around 18,597 out of 46,868 students.Damage to homes and shrunken income amid the pandemic are said to be reasons.
“Many families have severely lost income amid the pandemic. These families are finding it difficult to arrange Rs 1,000 to open bank accounts. This particular problem should be taken care of by the government,” said a source.