Saakshar mission starved of funds


For over a year, the 17,400 volunteers under the Centrally-sponsored Saakshar Bharat Mission tasked with making the State climb the literacy charts have been running pillar to post for their remuneration. Reason? The Central Government has contributed its 60 per cent share towards payment of Rs. 2,000 a month to village-level coordinators and Rs. 6,000 a month to mandal contributors. But, the Telangana Government has not released the balance 40 per cent since October last year.

Funds or lack of it, however, clearly is not the issue here as the State Government designed a 100-day adult literacy programme and awaiting Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao’s approval.

The programme was estimated to cost Rs. 25 crore but the unspent Central funds of Rs. 30 crore had accumulated. One wonders if the State Government is keen on having its stamp on the programme at the cost of Centre.

Pharmacists in

a quandary

It’s quite a pickle that the Telangana Pharmacy Council is ignored by the Government though it was launched six months ago. The council existed merely on paper as a deadline set by its tribunal for registration of members lapsed recently owing to negligence in setting up its office and commencing the process.

On the other hand, the Andhra Pradesh Pharmacy Council still happens to be the sole legal body to offer registration for pharmacy practitioners and students. As a result, the 65,000 registered pharmacists in Telangana and students who are dependent on the profession are looking to the AP body for registration. This, amid reports that AP Council would soon shift to that State.

While both students and practitioners are affected by this mismanagement, even top officers with the Drug Control Administration under which the Telangana council is supposed to function seems to have vacancies in the top posts including that of Director General.

Who is the

next CS?

The race for the key post of Chief Secretary of Telangana is hotting up as days pass by since the incumbent Rajiv Sharma is due to retire at month-end.

Senior-most officers who are tipped to step into Mr. Sharma’s shoes - K. Pradeep Chandra (1982 batch of IAS) and M.G. Gopal (1983) - both have one or two months left to retire.

Yet, they were understood to be making last-ditch efforts to realise the dream of cornering the coveted post.

Whoever makes it, he is in for a six-month extension of service in all likelihood like Mr. Sharma.

In case, those next in line are picked up, notably S.P. Singh would have tenure up to January 2018 and Shailendra Kumar Joshi till December-end 2019.

Binoy Kumar (1983), who is on Central deputation, would have tenure till May 2020 if a longer term is preferred.

102 service for lactating mothers

After 108 and 104 emergency medical services, it is now 102. The 102 vehicles will be used to transport lactating mothers home after delivery and bring them back to hospitals for follow up treatment.

The Telangana Government had proposed to allot 200 vehicles for the purpose but restricted the number to 41 and has left their management to GVK EMRI which operated 108. However, the 41 vehicles will be a detachment from the 108 fleet.

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