SJETA allays concern over misuse of scholarship fund

ITANAGAR, Aug 20: Seeking to allay concern among students regarding potential misuse of the pre- and post-matric scholarship fund, the social justice, empowerment & tribal affairs (SJETA) department today urged them not to believe in rumour-mongering.
Speaking to this daily, an SJETA official said there is no chance of any misuse of the scholarship fund as it is disbursed in the DBT mode through the PFMS platform of the government India and every transaction is closely monitored and scrutinized by the tribal affairs ministry.
“The very purpose of adopting the DBT mode is to avoid any kind of middlemen, so that the actual benefit directly reaches the beneficiaries, to enable the students to pursue their studies. The rates under the post-matric scholarship are fixed categorically by the State Fee Fixation Committee for Scholarship, which is headed by the SJETA commissioner or secretary. Also, the students should fill up the application forms by themselves, whether online or offline, to avoid any kind of unnecessary problem in future,” the official said.
The department has also asked those technical students who have received fewer amounts than the approved rate to visit the SJETA office during working hours and register their complaints.
“The ministry released an amount of Rs 1773.25 lakhs for the year 2017-18. Further, in order to meet the actual requirement, the department had to get approval from the state government for an amount of Rs 2290.16 lakhs as loan, with the condition to return or refund the amount immediately on receipt of the fund from the tribal affairs ministry,” the department informed.
The umbrella schemes of pre- and post-matric scholarship are centrally sponsored schemes of the union tribal affairs ministry. These schemes are implemented through the state nodal departments for tribal welfare. The pattern of funding is in the ratio of 90:10, ie, 90% central and 10% state. The time of disbursement of scholarship is purely based on the time of release of fund from the central government, unlike the state stipend, which is released towards the end of the financial year every year, the SJETA said.
The department also said though this scheme was implemented way back in 2013, not many were aware of it.
“In Arunachal, the scheme was implemented from 2012-13 with a total allocation of Rs 633.00 lakhs for 630 beneficiaries during the financial year 2012-13. However, with the efforts made by the department by creating awareness among the students on the benefits of the scheme, the number of beneficiaries has increased to 21000 in the following years,” it said.
The SJETA official further said officials of the finance, planning, etc, departments have played a major role in streamlining the scholarship scheme.