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HindustanTimes Fri,22 Aug 2014

Govt fails to clear grant of `40 crore

Vishal Rambani, Hindustan Times  Patiala, September 16, 2013
First Published: 00:22 IST(16/9/2013) | Last Updated: 00:39 IST(16/9/2013)

The constituent colleges of Punjab Government is proving more liabitity than asset to the Punjabi University, which has landed itself in deep financial mess as the government has failed to clear the pending dues of `25 crore of these colleges.

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Apart from that the cash strapped Punjab government, has also failed to release second installment of `12.37 crore of total `49 crore annual grant it allocates to Punjabi University.

Almost second quarter of the financial year is set to end next month, but the government has so far released grant of only first quarter.

If the Punjabi University has landed into a financial mess, the Punjab Government is mainly responsible as successively the  governments has failed to support the university. The government share of grants which were 78 percent of budget in 1980s, have now shirked to only 22 percent of Rs. 300 crore budget of the Punjabi University.

The bills of `25.5 crores are still pending towards Punjab government, which has not released last year's grant.

Ironically, for expansion of higher educational facilities and to ensure that all states in the country achieve the national average of gross enrolment ratio (GER) in higher education, UGC had identified a total of 374 districts in the country where the gross enrolment ratio in higher education was less than the national average.

Under the scheme, central assistance is being provided through the UGC, but is limited to `2.67 crores per college in the selected district and the balance requirement of the capital cost along with recurring cost is being met by the state.

"Though university is in some constraints, but will be comfortable once the government releases grants. Rest assured, Punjabi University will get enough grants, as CM PS Badal is very kind to our university. I am going to take take up the matter personally in the coming days," said Jaspal Singh, vice-chancellor Punjabi University. He said the registrar can give the details, as he has working on finances from the last eight years.

AS Chawla, registrar of university said "University is running nine colleges and Punjab government has to pay `1.5 crore for each college. Along with this the univeristy is yet to release the committed annual grant to the Punjabi University. Despite this, everything is in control and there is no financial mess, as projected by some people."

He, however, added "We have only limited income resources, thus we want the government to double its share of grants from ` 49 crore to `100 crore, as the implementation of fifth pay commission has taken our salary bill to `16 crore a month."

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