Schools under CIAA scanner

2015-01-05

Himalayan News Service

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The Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) has initiated investigations on charges of irregularity against more than a dozen schools in Lamjung. 

A team of officials from CIAA, District Education Office and other organisations has intensified investigation into Maling-based Sharada Higher Secondary School and Chiti-based Janakalyan Secondary School,l where incidents of fund embezzlement were found, according to the CIAA. 

During investigation, Raghunath Gurung, principal, Sharada Higher Secondary School and District Chairman of Nepal Teacher’s Union were found to have misappropriated Rs 1.6 million. 

Likewise Devimaya Ghale, a local of Bahundanda, was found to have embezzled Rs 1.1 million and Khajindra Gurung of Maling was found to have swindled Rs 2 lakh. The CIAA has directed District Education Office to take action against the accused and to see to it that the embezzled amount is returned to the authority. However locals accused the DEO of not taking any action against them.

According to Gurung, the trio had taken the money as loan with the school management committee’s approval. However, the anti graft body has not received any document showing the SMC’s loan grant approval. 

Tej Narayan Mandal, former principal of Janakalyan Higher Secondary School was also found to have embezzled Rs 1.72 lakh.

Some private schools also have been under the CIAA’s scanner for alleged irregularities. 

Bhorletar-based Ishaneshwor Higher Secondary School was found charging its students with fee under admission and monthly headings and embezzling Rs 2.8 million. 

However, Bhumiraj Paudel, the principal of the school, refuted the charges. 

Similarly, it was found that the Simpani-based Suryajyoti Primary School had not updated its social audit for the past one decade. The school has been charged with using a large sum of donation fund granted by the education office, village development committees, hydro projects and others as well as misappropriating Rs 4 lakh on the pretext of construction class rooms and toilets. 

The CIAA also initiated a probe of Loknath Ghimire, then SMC Chairman of Bahundanda-based Chandrodaya Higher Secondary School. 

Likewise, Krishna Prasad Tiwari, SMC Chairman of Jita-based Saptadhara Secondary School has been accused of misappropriating Rs. 1.1 million. 

A CIAA source said that Shiva Khanal, a teacher at Tandrangtaksar-based Suryodaya Primary School, had drawn seven months’ salary without even attending the school. Chiti-based Lokraj Secondary School’s SMC Chairman Shiva Raj Joshi has been accused of presenting a fake son to hold the post, claimed a CIAA source. 

A complaint has been lodged against Sayapatri Secondary School at Sundar Bazaar for giving legitimacy to the same SMC for many years. 

Similarly, Chairman, Campus Chief, accountant and some committee representatives of Sundar Bazaar-based Matribhumi Campus were accused of embezzling Rs 2 million in grants provided by Tribhuvan University. 

The CIAA has also initiated probe into the irregularity charge against the Chairmen of Milan Shanti Youth Club and Child Development Centre in Sundar Bazaar. 

Meanwhile, Baburam Baral, communication officer of District Education Office, said that his office was also investigating other schools that had been charged with irregularity under directive from the CIAA.