Following complaints that a number of private schools in Bhopal insisting that parents pay their wards’ fees in cash, district education officer on Friday directed educational institutes to accept cheques and online payments until December 31.
“We will take action against schools that refuse to accept fees through cheques and online transfers,” said Dharmendra Sharma.“We have received complaints about a few schools pressurizing parents to pay fees in cash after demonetisation and also levying late fees,” Sharma told Hindustan Times.
“We have issued a show cause notice to All Saints School, on Airport Road as we found that normally the institution accepted cheques but since the scrapping of 1,000 and 500-rupee banknotes, the management is forcing parents to pay fees of their wards only in cash,” he said.
There is a reason why schools are not in favour of accepting fees through online transfers and cheque payments, said Prabodh Pandya, general secretary of Pallak Mahasangh.
“After informal inquiries with the accounts section of a few city schools, we found that the management charges between Rs 3,000 and 5,000 every month from each student and collect crores,” he said.
“If fees are paid through cheques or transferred online, it will be recorded by banks and even though educational institutions are exempted from paying taxes, the school managements are being cautious as a number of the institutes are run by big business houses.”
A number of parents, who did not wish to be named, said that schools, including Theodosian Academy, Mansarovar Public School, Azad Public School, Mother Teresa School and Scholars Public Home, are only accepting cash payments and the institutes have also not extended the last date of paying fee after the Centre demonetised high-value banknotes.
Panel formed for cashless system
The state cabinet on Friday took a decision to form a committee chaired by finance minister Jayant Malaiya to see how a cashless system can work effectively in Madhya Pradesh. The move comes in the wake of the central government’s demonetisation scheme.
The cabinet meeting took place on evening chaired by chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan. However, the CM was taken ill after the meeting and all his programmes on Saturday were cancelled.
As per official sources, the committee would look into the areas and suggest to the government where cashless transactions are possible. It would also look into the practical problems associated with the cashless system being put in.
The cabinet also approved a bill which would be tabled in the state assembly during its ensuing winter session from December 5 to 9. If passed, a green tax would be imposed on old vehicles in the state.
The cabinet also approved the proposal for a supplementary budget during the assembly session.