Two days after protests from across the state, the school education department stayed the `selfie with students' programme on Wednesday. The state officials said they would make changes depending on feedback before considering reintroducing the initiative.
“The selfies were to be taken to ensure that out-of-school children who are being enrolled in school attend regularly. However, the implementation of the programme was flawed. The programme was meant for out-of-school children, but the officials said it is applicable to all students. We will soon meet the officials and train them that the selfies have to be taken only for outof-school children. Until then, the programme has been stayed,“ said education minister Vinod Tawde. A government resolution too was issued to that effect.
According to a government resolution issued last November, teachers have to take a picture with students in groups of 10 on first two Mondays of the month and then with those who remain absent regularly . The teachers will also have to provide the students' names and their Aadhaar numbers before uploading them on the governments online database, SARAL. The scheme was scheduled to begin from the first week of January, but the software was not ready to upload pictures, which postponed the implementation to January 9. Several teachers in the state had refused to click selfies, saying that they did not have smart phones and that the exercise ate into teaching time. Protesting groups said they want the programme to be scrapped.