Classes 9, 10 students Only will be covered under Pre-Matric Scholarship Scheme, says Govt

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The government has stated that the Right to Education covers compulsory education up to Class 8th for all students and has now limited its pre-matric scholarship scheme for backward and minority communities to students of Class 9 and 10. Previously, the pre-matric scholarship used to cover education for Class 1 to 8 students belonging to SC, ST, OBC, and minority communities.

The government has justified its decision to exclude students in Classes 9 and 10 from the Pre-Matric Scholarship Scheme by underlining that the Right to Education (RTE) Act, 2009 makes it obligatory for the government to provide free and compulsory elementary education (Classes 1 to 8) to each and every child.

“Accordingly, only students studying in Classes 9 and 10 are covered under the Pre-Matric Scholarship Scheme of the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment and the Ministry of Tribal Affairs. Likewise, from 2022-23, the coverage under the pre-matric scholarship scheme of the Ministry of Minority Affairs shall also be for Classes 9 and 10 only.

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The Institute Nodal Officer (INO)/District Nodal Officer (DNO)/State Nodal Officer (SNO) have been asked to verify the applications for Classes 9 and 10 under the Pre-Matric Scholarship Scheme of the Ministry of Minority Affairs.

Randeep Singh Surjewala, a Congress MP, has accused the government of “conspiring” against the poor by stopping scholarships for children from SC/ST backgrounds from 2022-23 onwards.

“The BJP has been systematically attacking SC/ST/OBC and minority communities for the past 8 years, whether it was cutting their budgets, committing atrocities against them, or ending their welfare schemes. And now this. We do not accept this. We will run a movement against it. The government must take back this decision immediately,” he said.

BSP leader Kunwar Danish Ali claimed that the government has found a new way to keep poor minority children from getting an education by stopping the scholarship given to them (Class 1-8).

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