Uttar Pradesh: 90% government school students yet to receive free sweaters

A little over 10% students studying at government primary and upper primary schools of Lucknow have received free sweaters so far. There are around 1.7 lakh students enrolled in government schools in the city. Out of these, only 18,000 received free sweaters till Tuesday. 

lucknow Updated: Jan 10, 2018 15:47 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
Uttar Pradesh,Winters,Sweaters
Government officials said that efforts were on to distribute sweaters to all the 1.54 crore students of Uttar Pradesh at the earliest. (HT Photo)

A little over 10% students studying at government primary and upper primary schools of Lucknow have received free sweaters so far. There are around 1.7 lakh students enrolled in government schools in the city. Out of these, only 18,000 received free sweaters till Tuesday.

The scenario in other districts is worse. In Lakhimpur, out of around 4 lakh government school students, just 25,000 have received sweaters.

To recall, school management committees (SMCs) were entrusted with the responsibility to buy and distribute sweaters to students. However, working as per the rule mentioned by the government -- ensuring that sweaters are priced at no higher than Rs 200 / piece -- the SMCs are struggling to complete the task within the specified timeline of a month.

“There is a firm in Ludhiana that has agreed to provide sweaters at Rs 200 / piece. But most suppliers are not keen to take orders, saying that the price fixed by the government is too low,” said an official of the education department.

After schools reopened on Monday, many students were seen attending classes wearing different colour sweaters. Lucknow Basic Siksha Adhikari Praveen Mani Tripathi has instructed teachers to remain on duty to ensure distribution of sweaters to students.

Government officials said that efforts were on to distribute sweaters to all the 1.54 crore students of Uttar Pradesh at the earliest.

To recall, additional chief secretary Raj Pratap Singh on Wednesday directed all district magistrates to ask SMCs to purchase and distribute sweaters to students within 30 days from the date of the issuance of the order.

The order came after the state government’s efforts to provide sweaters to students ran into rough weather.The government failed to attract enough tenders for sweaters, and the price quoted by those who had applied was above Rs 200 / piece.

So, it was decided that help would be sought from SMCs and the practice followed while purchasing uniforms last year would be replicated. In 2017, the old khaki uniforms of government school students were replaced with new red-coloured ones.

First Published: Jan 10, 2018 15:47 IST