Monday, March 11, 2013

Nagpur Municipal Corporation seeks approval to buy uniforms from outside

Nagpur Municipal Corporation seeks approval to buy uniforms from outside

Anjaya Anparthi, TNN Sep 13, 2012, 04.42AM IST

NAGPUR: Following standing committee's directives, the Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) officials have checked and confirmed that the school uniforms distributed among the students were of poor quality. The NMC has now decided to take up the matter with the State government.
NMC's education department had placed for approval before the standing committee a proposal to purchase and stitch school uniforms for 6,000 students studying in its school. The NMC will purchase 12,000 uniforms, two uniforms for each student, at a cost of Rs 51.45 lakh. The funds have been sanctioned by NMC. According to Government's guidelines, NMC has to purchase the cloth for the uniforms from Maharashtra State Powerloom Corporation and get it stitched from Maharashtra State Handloom Corporation.

During the discussion on the proposal in the standing committee's meeting held on Monday, member and senior corporator, Praful Gudadhe raised serious question on the quality of uniforms being distributed among the students.
Gudadhe told TOI that the uniforms were of poor quality and threads would start coming out within 3-4 months. "Quality of the cloth and also the stitching is very inferior. Students are unable to use the uniforms for even 4-5 months. Each uniform is costs Rs 438.40 per piece. The NMC can get uniforms of branded quality at this cost," he said, who also runs many schools.
Chairman of standing committee Dayashankar Tiwari said that the conditions prescribed in the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) prevents NMC from purchasing the uniforms according to its wish.
"Inferior quality of cloth and also stitching along with high price makes the entire deal a loss making one. Therefore, the committee directed the officials to seal and send a sample uniform to the Government along with the request seeking permission to purchase uniforms as per NMC's wish from the next academic session," he said.
Deputy municipal commissioner Rizwan Siddiqui confirmed that the school uniforms were of inferior quality. "We are sending the uniform along with the Standing committee's request to the Government."
In yet another shocking revelation it came to be known that the uniforms distributed among the students this year were purchased in the last academic session. A senior NMC official told TOI that the grants and permission from the Government come after the academic session starts.
"It takes at least three to four months for completing the procedure and procure the uniforms. NMC obtained the uniforms purchased from the funds of last session in May this year. The funds sanctioned for this year will be utilized for purchasing the uniforms for the next year," he said.
The official further said that the Government made a welcome move to provide uniforms to all students coming under below poverty level from this year.
"Earlier, only girl students and those coming from SC and ST were given uniforms. The Government has now covered BPL students in the beneficiary list. Now all the students are getting uniforms," he said.

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