Imphal, Jan 16:
At a time when various organisations including students’ and Guardian bodies are raising their voices against the appointment of a regular Chairman on a Deputation basis at a time when the Council of Higher Secondary Education Manipur (COHSEM) has already started preparation for conducting the class XI and Class XII, team Imphal Times is shocked to found that within a span of 5 months, the COHSEM had utilized over Rs. 70 Lakhs for purchase of mobile phones, stationery items, computers, furniture and for construction of vehicle sheds.
In a close look, the expenditure did not reflect any amount of money spent for preparation for conducting the examination for class XI and XII.
From time-to-time COHSEM has always been in the news not for good reason. And this time too, the COHSEM is in the news with demand from various student bodies and guardian organization over the frequent changes of its chairman. The office was even locked by a group of student body over this issue. With the examination of Class XI and Class XII coming up in one or two months, the students’ bodies and the guardian association showed their apprehension about disturbances that may occur due to the change to the chairman.
Dr. Chingangbam Sarat Singh, Associate Professor and HOD of the English Department of DM College of Science was appointed as in-charge Chairman of the COHSEM till a regular chairman is appointed by an order of the Education -S Department, Government of Manipur on July 12, 2022, after the retirement of the earlier Chairman Dr. L. Mahendra Singh. Later, on December 16, 2022, the Education-S department, Government of Manipur appointed T. Ojit Singh, Joint Director (i/c), Associate Professor, Directorate of University and Higher Education, Govt. of Manipur as the Chairman of the COHSEM on deputation for a period of 3 years which can be extended till 5 years.
The appointment of T. Ojit Singh as the Chairman seems not satisfactory to some of the officials of the COHSEM and the in-charge chairman which ultimately created hurdles in the functioning of COHSEM.
Interestingly, the COHSEM is run by the revenues collected from students through fees and fines, not by any Grant from the Government. When Imphal Times team try to find out the real reason for the tussle that arises at COHSEM, our team managed to procure a document of expenditures. Imphal Times, however, fails to find any evidences on whether the amount spent during the tenure of the in-charge chairman is the root of the problem but is shocked to learn in finding expenditures that are not directly related to conducting the class XI and Class XII examinations.
As per the expenditure document available with Imphal Times, a total of Rs. 12,41,254/- (Twelve lakhs forty-one thousand two hundred fifty-four) was spent for the purchase of Cartridges from July 27, 2022, to December 9, 2022. On August 2, 2022, an amount of Rs. 72,800/- was spent for the purchase of mobile phones and another sum of Rs. 65,268 for the purchase of biometrics. The installation charge is stated as Rs. 15,100/-. A total of Rs. 10,55,014/- (Ten lakhs fifty-five thousand and fourteen) was spent for the purchase of revolving chairs and tables during August, September, and October of 2022. In the said month a total of Rs. 16,28,180/- (Sixteen Lakh twenty-eight thousand one hundred and eighty) was spent on the purchase of computers, printers and laptops. In September 2022, an amount of Rs. 3,46,069/- (Three lakhs forty-six thousand and sixty-nine) was spent for the construction of Vehicle shed. Another amount of Rs. 2,24,200/- (Two lakhs twenty-four thousand two hundred) was spent for the purchase of 200 bags. During the month of September to November of 2022 six workshops were conducted with an expenditure of Rs. 24,08,800/- (Twenty-four lakhs eight thousand eight hundred).
The total amount spent within these five months is Rs. 70,56,658/- (Seventy lakhs fifty-six thousand six hundred and fifty-eight).