Editorial: Wither education

Education is the key area to gauge the development and progress of a nation. But when it comes to a state like ours it seems that the government believes in selling dreams only rather than doing some ground work to improve the scene on the educational front.

What has come as a rude shock is the number of vacancies that have been left vacant in the school education department, besides resorting to adhocism while dealing with prestigious institutions where professional education is provided.

At least 4351 posts of teachers and lecturers are vacant in the school education department and if official figures are to be believed then 3126 posts of teachers and 1225 posts of lecturers have remained vacant in the school education department till date, taking a toll on the overall academic activity.

The official estimates reveal that around 3126 teacher posts which include 2581 general line teachers and 545 Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan teachers (SSA) are lying vacant in the department.

Out of 2581 vacancies of general line teachers, 1864 vacant posts of direct recruitment quota of Kashmir division have been recently referred to SSB for selection of suitable candidates. Besides, around 1255 posts-593 direct promotion and 632 promotion quota of 10 2 lecturers are also lying vacant in Kashmir division in various disciplines under direct recruitment and promotion quota.

The scene is no different in the prestigious national institute of technology (NIT) Srinagar, which has become a ‘centre for rehabilitation’ for its retired employees as the authorities are providing extension to retired officials for managing key positions in the institute.

Authorities have given extension to people for managing post of deputy registrar accounts, assistant registrar audit and personal assistant to director. Though these posts could have been advertised and genuine candidates could have taken over but the officials involved in the mess wish to have their candidates to continue for unknown reasons.

The callous attitude of the government vis-à-vis the state’s educational scenario is highly depreciable as such moves have a direct bearing on the future of our student’s community.

What has come as a shock is that the state’s education minister leaves no stone unturned to get media attention where he and his top officials claim that revolutionary measures are being taken to revamp the education sector. However, on ground the situation reflects apathy and neglect.

The education sector continues to be lacking on various fronts as the department is already facing lot of heat for improving the infrastructure in this crucial sector. What has added to the woes of the department is that the federal government has asked the state government to arrange for funds for providing drinking water facilities in schools. Earlier, the Union HRD ministry was scheduled to finance the scheme but as of now they have altered the guidelines asking the states to arrange for the funds. This has come at a time when the state’s 50 percent of school’s do not access to drinking water facilities.

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