Punjab board heading towards major financial crisis; fails to pay June salary
Mohali The Punjab School Education Board (PSEB) has failed to failed to pay June salary to its 1,100 employees and pension to 1,600-odd retirees. The delay is being attributed to the state government not paying the board ₹427 crore as reimbursement for printing textbooks and fee for Scheduled Caste students since 2013.
Director public instructions (DPI), secondary, which is running its office from the board building in Phase-8 has not paid rent and arrears since 2012, running up a bill of ₹20 crore. Employees claim that the Adarsh Schools have also proved to be a major drain on the board’s revenues.
The monthly expenditure of the board is ₹15 crore, of which ₹5 crore goes in salaries and ₹5.5 crore in pension payment. The board has offices in each district of the state.
Parvinder Singh, president, PSEB Employees Association, said, “This is the first time that the board has failed to pay our salaries. The situation is grim. We have provided textbooks to students on time, but have not got money from the state government.” He added that Adarsh schools had become a liability for the board. “Their expenditure is a big hole on the board’s budget,” he claimed.
Board chairman Yog Raj said, “There is a major financial crunch before the board. We have already requested the state government to clear our dues. We hope for a resolution soon.”
ADARSH SCHOOLS A MAJOR BURDEN
Adarsh schools, meant to provide admission to brilliant but poor students, has proved to be a major drain on the board’s finances. The board constructed 11 Adarsh schools and spends ₹34 crore a year on these, but earns a mere ₹1.5 crore. This loss of ₹32.5 crore a year is eating into the board’s finances.
In 2007, the board, under the then chairman Dalbir Singh Dhillon, spent ₹16 crore on the building of such a school in Mohali. The building has now been given to Punjab government departments on rent, but payment is irregular. In 2017, it was decided to hand over these schools to the government, but the move has not been implemented.