Odisha Assembly Adjourned Over Slashing Of Post-Matric Scholarship Fund

Bhubaneswar: The Odisha Assembly on Monday was adjourned till 3 pm following uproar by the ruling BJD members over the slashing of the Post-Matric scholarship fund for the Scheduled Tribe (ST) students by the Centre.
As soon as the Speaker Pradip Amat announced the Question Hour, the members of the Treasury Bench stood up and protested against the revision of the post-matric scholarship fund for the ST students of Odisha by the Centre.

Unable to run the proceedings, the Speaker adjourned the House till 3 pm.

Notably, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, in a letter to Union minister of Social Justice & Empowerment Thaawar Chand Gehlot on November 17, had said that the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment was providing about 90 per cent, while the state government borne the remaining 10 per cent of the actual expenditure.

Accordingly, during 2016-17, the Central share was Rs 215.80 crore while the state share was Rs 22.48 crore.

However, from 2017-18 onwards, the Ministry has revised the liability of the state government towards post-Matric scholarship wherein the state government has to bear more than 80 per cent of the total expenditure.

During 2017-18, the state government had to provide Rs 238.28 crore while the Ministry allocated a meagre Rs 35.12 crore. During 2018-19, the state government has to provide Rs 238.28 crore, while the Central share is projected to be Rs 49.39 crore.

“Such an abrupt change in the funding pattern by the Ministry has given a severe jolt to the post-Matric scholarship programme for the SC and ST students,” the Chief Minister said, and requested the Union minister to intervene in the matter and restore the funding pattern of 90:10 for smooth implementation of the post-Matric scholarship programme for the Scheduled Caste students.


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