GUWAHATI, Oct 3 - A sizeable number of �ghost� students were detected during the Gunotsav, a quality enhancement initiative in schools for bringing about improvement in learning level, and this has led to decline in the enrolment figures in the schools.
Education Minister Siddhartha Bhattacharya today told the Assembly that the detection of such �ghost� students was good for the system. The minister was replying to a question by Bihpuria MLA Debananda Hazarika.
�Earlier, no one knew what was going on in the schools. Gunotsav has brought about a revolution in the education scenario,� the minister said.
Asked if any action would be taken against the schools where �ghost� children were detected, the minister said it was difficult to prove it. �The teachers claim that the students have stopped coming. You cannot verify it. But we detected a lacuna in the system which has been plugged,� he said.
But schools which scored A plus in the Gunotsav were given an incentive of Rs 25,000, he said.
�We are not in favour of punishing schools which performed poorly. Instead we plan to mentor them so that their quality improves. Besides, the department is also plugging other gaps relating to infrastructure, etc.,� he said.
The minister and Mariani MLA Rupjyoti Kurmi engaged in an ugly spat during the question hour over shortage of teachers in some schools. Kurmi questioned the delay in filling up of vacant posts of teachers even though the academic year was nearing end.
The minister asserted that the pending court cases had stalled the process of teacher recruitment, while the government has approved the filling up of vacancies in secondary schools.
Soon a heated exchange of words erupted in the Assembly between the ruling and opposition benches, prompting Speaker Hitendra Nath Goswami to intervene. �We should not try to score points here,� the Speaker said, asking legislators not to use �unparliamentary words�.