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PULWAMA — The officials of the Zonal Education Office (ZEO) Shadimarg in southern Pulwama district have allegedly embezzled the funds meant for the salaries of the seasonal teachers.

The fund allegedly embezzled by the education officials has left these seasonal teachers fuming who have demanded probe into the alleged fraud by some top investigation agency.

The top officials in education zone Shadimarg, according to sources, had engaged 22 teachers for academic year 2019 for students of Gujjar Bakerwal community migrating to upper reaches during Summers for grazing their cattle.

The monthly remuneration paid to the each seasonal teacher is Rs 4000. Going by the monthly wages, the officials were supposed to release Rs 24,000 to each such teacher who had performed their duties for six months.

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Sources said that the officials of Zonal office, however, only released Rs 16,000 to each teacher, thus grabbing their hard earned money.

“Even CEO office has released Rs 5,28,000 to the ZEO concerned as wages for these poor seasonal teachers but the later released only Rs 3,52,000 in their favor,” said insiders.

These teachers demanded probe into the alleged fraud committed by the ZEO office.

Members of Gujjar Bakerwal Advisory Board also alleged that the education authorities in the Zone are not serious about the education of the poor students from the community.

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“Besides engaging seasonal teachers, the authorities are supposed to provide waterproof tents to these students which they can install for their studies during migration period but they are forced to study in open sky. No such arrangements are being made but funds for the same are withdrawn,” a member of Advisory Board said.

Zonal Education Officer termed these allegations as baseless, saying that whatever was due to these seasonal teachers has been released and there is no embezzlement at all.

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