No headway by Edu dept’s Task Force, gets another extension

No headway by Edu dept’s Task Force, gets another extension
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The task force has to report on infra gaps, news subjects and staff

Irshad Khan

SRINAGAR: More than three months after it was set up, there is no headway with the School Education Department’s ‘Task Force’, which was supposed to make recommendations on key issues confronting the department.
The department had on February 1 constituted the Task Force to provide recommendations on infrastructural gaps in schools, introduction of new subjects, regulation of staff at various levels, filling up of vacant posts and referral of vacancies to recruiting agencies.
While the Task Force was chaired by the then Minister of State (MoS) for Education, State Project Directors of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) and Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyaan (RMSA), Directors School Education, Kashmir and Jammu, Additional Secretary Administration and Joint Director Planning were among the members.
The Task Force is yet to submit its recommendations to the government on the issues, the constituent members said.
The task force was supposed to submit its recommendations within a month, however, after more than three months, the department on Friday extended its term further by a month.
State Project Director SSA, A R War, one of the members of the Task Force, admitted that they had not yet submitted any recommendation report to the government on the said issues, although he said, “We have identified the infrastructural gaps.”
The Task Force, War said, has had “two meetings” since its inception.
Over the inordinate delay in filing the recommendations, War cited the recent change of ministers in the department.
“The MoS has changed. She was the chairperson. Now, only after a meeting takes place under the current MoS, it will be finalised,” added War.
War said that they had to involve the engineering wing of the department as well.
“They will estimate the cost of the infrastructure gaps.”
Although “the process is on”, no report has yet been submitted by the Task Force to the government, State Project Director RMSA Tufail Mattoo told Kashmir Reader.
“We have not compiled any report yet,” he said.
While the members were also supposed to consult legislators in the state over the issues, Mattoo said that they “have asked the Chief Education Officers to be in touch (with the legislators) to check the priorities”.
Even as the Task Force has been asked to make recommendations on the introduction of new subjects in the state, Mattoo said, “There is a separate committee on introduction on new subjects.”
Education Minister Chowdhary Zulfikar Ali could not be contacted for comments.