Setback for PM Modi? CAG criticises much-hyped Gujarat development model in its report

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Gandhinagar, April 1: Projecting his 'Gujarat development model' Prime Minister Narendra Modi received a thumping victory in last year's Lok Sabha polls, but a report by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has raised questions over the much-famed model.

CAG criticises PM Modi's 'Gujarat Model'

Criticising the Gujarat government in its audit report tabled in the Gujarat Assembly, the CAG seems to have deflated the tall claims made by the Narendra Modi-led government agricultural growth, fiscal discipline, right to education, law and order situation, social indicators and expenditure on social infrastructure.

As per a TOI report, the CAG report observed that Gujarat's average annual agriculture growth rate during the 11th five-year plan (2007-12) was 5.49% - better than the all India average of 4.06%.

However, GDP in agriculture clocked a negative growth (-6.96%) in 2012-13, the first year of 12th plan, as compared to the previous years - 21.64% in 2010-11 and 5.02% in 2011-12.

The auditor also rapped the state government for not maintaining teaching staff in schools run by it, resulting in children dropping out of these schools.

In its compliance audit of the Sarva Siksha Abhiyan (SSA) scheme in Gujarat for the year 2013-14, the CAG stated that out of 43,176 government-run schools in the state, 64 schools having 5,698 students run without any teacher.

Further, 874 schools function with merely one teacher as on March 2014.

[Modinomics: Deciphering the Gujarat development model]

"Teaching work was assigned by authorities to teachers of nearby schools as an alternate arrangement. Thus, the state has not ensured availability of adequate teaching staff as per the norms. This could have an effect on the quality of education imparted to students," the CAG report stated.

CAG also slammed the government for not maintaining Pupil-Teacher Ratio (PTR) in more than 6,000 state-run primary schools and upper-primary schools in five tribal-dominated districts of Gujarat including Dangs, Dahod, Panchmahal, Tapi and Valsad.

These five districts comprise 41 per cent of total tribal population of the state, the CAG report stated. The CAG report mentioned that as per the SSA framework and guidelines of the Right to Education (RTE) Act, there should be atleast two teachers in primary schools with a pupil-teacher ratio of 40:1, while upper primary schools ought to have atleast one teacher per class with a pupil-teacher-ratio of 35:1.

However, the CAG observed during its audit that "Pupil-Teacher Ration was not maintained in 156 out of 3,147 primary schools and 2,535 schools out of 3,016 upper primary schools in these tribal districts.

Highest pupil-teacher ratio in one of the primary schools was found to be 156:1 as against 40:1, while a pupil-teacher ratio of 363:1 was found in one of the test-checked upper primary schools," the CAG report stated.

The CAG report provided data which showed that 21.28 per cent of tribal students of primary schools have not enrolled for upper primary section.

"Out of 4.37 lakh Scheduled Tribe (ST) students on the rolls in class one to class four during 2009-10, only 3.44 lakh (78.72 per cent) of students could be retained in class five to class eight upto 2013-14," the CAG report said. The CAG attributed non-retention of these students to "non-maintenance of pupil-teacher ratio and inadequate basic amenities in schools".

The CAG report notes that as per 2011 census, while the all-India sex ratio improved from 933 to 943, it worsened from 922 to 919 in Gujarat. This shows that the state's Child Protection Schemes has also failed.

OneIndia News

(With inputs from PTI)

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