Deharadun (UK) : The blind students at National Institute for the Visually Handicapped have boycotted classes since Monday to demand a stipend of Rs 2,500 and laptops that were promised to them. Officials from the institute said that while an order has already been initiated to provide the laptops, they are unsure about the stipend amount due to changes in the norms of the scheme.
It is learnt that the institute has been providing free lodging, free food, free meals and other products of daily needs to nearly 150 individuals. However, an amount of Rs 2,500, which the students were supposed to get under the Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana, has not been given to them. The students said that they need the money to apply for jobs, learn different skills and improve lifestyle.
“We just want the institute to tell us the date when we will receive the laptops and the stipend money. We are getting a meager amount of Rs 250 from the institute, which is not sufficient to survive. We also need the amount promised to us by the skill development ministry. We will intensify our agitation if our matter is not addressed soon,” said Monu Verma, who is enrolled in a course on office management.
Meanwhile, the officials from the institute claimed that an order has already been given for laptops, which should arrive in a few weeks. “However, as far as the stipend is concerned, we are not sure by when will the skill development ministry release it as there were some changes in the norms of the scheme. In fact, we are even unsure if we will receive the amount at all,” the officials said.
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