Himanta Biswa Sarma during a press conference at Janata Bhawan on Tuesday Credit: EastMojo image

Assam finance and education minister Himanta Biswa Sarma announced scooters for 22,000 girls who have passed higher secondary final examinations with first division rank.

During a press conference at Janata Bhawan on Tuesday, the minister informed earlier, as presented in the state budget, all such students meritorious students were to be given electric scooters. But now, the state government has found it to be unfeasible.

Highlighting the issues with electric scooter, Sarma said, “Many students might not be able to charge the scooter regularly, and its speed is also limited to 30 to 40 km per hour. So we will now be providing the regular petrol scooters.”

However, he added that if any student particularly wishes to receive an electric scooter over a petrol one, they may do so.

Assam government will launch a new website called sebaonline.org, where students can choose their choice of scooter variant. But if anybody fails to do so, then they will be awarded with the automatic petrol scooter.

Making sure that the scooters used, he said that students would have to bear the cost of registration and they will not be able to sell those for at least three years.

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Govt urges all colleges to increase UG seats by 25%

Further, the education minister has urged all colleges of Assam to increase their undergraduate seats by 25% for this year. Sarma said, “Considering that the many students of the state council are not being able to take admission, we have asked the colleges to increase their seat capacity by 25% only for this year. All these seats will be reserved for state council students only.”

This comes as CBSE students could complete their examinations due to COVID-19 pandemic, so they were given projected marks. However, AHSEC students had completed all its examinations prior to the pandemic. “Their marks are actual,” state Sarma.

So the marks secured by CBSE students are more than that of ASHEC students, making it easier for the CBSE students to take admissions.

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Teachers to rejoin educational institutes from September 1

All the teachers will have to mandatorily attend their workplaces from September 1, informed Sarma during the press conference. Leave without pay will be implemented on any teacher or other official employee who fail to join duty on September 1.

And as a precautionary measure, they will all have to undergo COVID-19 tests. Sarma said, “All the teachers from primary to university level will test themselves for COVID-19 from August 21 to 30. This is for the greater interests and safety of the students. The teachers will have to mandatorily attend their workplaces from September 1. Failing of which will be regarded as leave without pay.”

Appointment of teachers

The appointment process for lower primary (LP) and upper primary (UP) teachers in Assam will begin from August 27.

Sarma said that the appointment letters to 300 candidates will be distributed at a programme to be held at Sankardeva Kalakshetra in Guwahati. Other candidates will be able to download the appointment letters from specific websites. Total 7,000 candidates will be appointed as LP, ME teachers.

Also, the government will issue advertisement for the posts of 7,440 high school teachers in the first week of September.

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