Persons with disability to get free coaching for Job Recruitment Exam and competitive exams that means for appearing in competitive examinations for jobs in Government/ Public Sector and admission to technical and professional courses.
As you are aware, Government of India is trying hard to provide Government Jobs to Persons with Disabilities (PWD) / Physically Handicapped persons and running a Special Recruitment Drive to fill all the vacancies for PWD candidates.
Supreme Court has also come down heavily on State and Central Governments to fill all the vacant vacancies reserved for Physically Handicapped (PH) candidates.
Now, the Central Government ha come with another idea, whereas the Indian Government will provide free coaching to PWD / PH candidates. Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (Divyangjan) under Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment,
Government of India has come up with a special Central Sector Scheme for ‘Free Coaching for Students with Disabilities’ to appear in competitive examinations for Government Jobs and Admission Tests for technical and professionals courses (CAT / MAT/ XAT/ GATE etc.)
Physically Disabled / Handicapped candidates will be provided stipend / allowances of Rs.2500/- per month for local candidates where coaching centres run and Rs.5000/- for outstation students. Additionally disability allowance of Rs.2000/- per month will be payable to the candidates.
Schemes for providing free coaching to students belonging to Scheduled Castes(SCs) and Other Backward Classes(OBCs) is presently available. However, there is no such ongoing scheme for students with disabilities.
XII Five year Plan document in the context of socio-economic development of persons with disabilities, inter alia, provides that emphasis will be on educational development of such persons through a scheme for free coaching of students with disabilities.
Objective of Free Coaching for Students with Disabilities: The objective of the Scheme is to provide coaching for economically disadvantaged students with disabilities, having minimum 40% or more disability to enable them to appear in competitive examinations and to succeed in obtaining an appropriate job in Government / Public / Private Sector.
Courses for coaching
The courses for which the coaching will be imparted shall as follows
- Recruitment examinations conducted by the Union Public Service Commission(UPSC), the staff selection Commission(SSC) and the various Railway Recruitment Boards (RRBs) for Group ‘A’and ‘B’ posts;
- Recruitment examinations conducted by the state public service commission for group ‘A’ and ‘B’ posts in the respective states.
- Recruitment examinations conducted by INstitute of Banking Personnel Selection (IBPS), Nationalized Banks, Government Insurance Companies and Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) for Officer level posts under them.
- Entrance Examinations for admission in
- (a) Engineering (eg. IIT-JEE)
- Medical (eg.NEET)
- Professional courses like Management(eg. CAT)
- Law (eg. CLAT) and
- Any other such disciplines as Ministry may decide from time to time
The Scheme will be implemented through the reputed coaching institutions / centre run by the:
- Central Government / State Governments / UT Administrations and PSUs or Autonomous Bodies there under
- Universities (under both central and state governments) including the Deemed Universities and Private Universities; and
- Registered private institutions / NGOs
Eligibility Criteria for applying for empanelment of Coaching Institutes:
The institute should be a registered body or run by any organization registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860 /Companies Act, 2013 or any other relevant Act of the State / Union territory;
The institute should have been registered at least for a period of 3 years as on date of notification inviting applications from States / UTs/ Coaching Institutes for empanelment by the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities
The institute should have been fully functional for a minimum period of 3 years at the time of applying under this scheme and having a minimum enrolment of 100 students in the courses as indicated at Para-3 here in above each year for at least two years, immediately prior to the year in which empanelment is sought
The institute must have proper infrastructure (barrier free) to meet all prescribed requirements for providing coaching in the courses applied for.
Selection of Institutes
(i) The proposals for empanelment of coaching institutes will be considered by a Selection Committee and recommended for selection based on their past record of performance and other criteria to be determined by the Selection Committee.
The institutes for providing coaching will finally be selected by the DEPwD based on the recommendations of the Selection Committee. The Composition of Selection Committee will be as follows:
Joint Secretary (DEPwD) – Chairperson
Financial Advisor, DEPwD or nominee not below the rank of DS/Director – Member
Joint Secretary, Deptt. of Higher Education – Member
Two Representatives from relevant background to be decided by the department – Member
Director / Ds, Concerned, DEPwD – Convener
(ii) The States/UTs will furnish a list of (not more than 10) reputed coaching institutes with a proven track record of success in coaching in courses identified in Para-3 here-in-above.
(iii) In addition to proposals received from States, the Selection Committee, as indicated at Sub-para (i) above, may also propose empanelment of institutes which enjoy good reputation and record of performance in providing coaching.
(iv) On receipt of list of names of coaching institutes, the institutes will be requested by Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (DEPwD) to submit a detailed proposal in compliance with requirements of the Scheme along with their performance record in proforma as requested.
(v) Reputed institutes having branches in more than one district in a State will be given preference over stand alone institutes.
(vi) The concerned Programme Division will carry out a preliminary screening of the proposals received from State Governments / UTs and institutes recommended by the Selection Committee and shortlist those, which prima facie satisfy the eligibility criteria and have all prescribed supporting documents. Such shortlisted proposals shall be placed before the Selection Committee.
(vii) The institutes, once selected, will enter into an Agreement with the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (DEPwD), Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India with regard to the courses to be offered, terms and conditions of empanelment, fee structures, frequency of disbursal, number of slots, duration of courses, furnishing of Utilization Certificates, etc.
(viii) Selected coaching institutes will be empanelled for a period of three years subject to their Agreements entered with the DEPwD.
Note: With a mew to give the Scheme wider publicity, the coaching institutes will issue advertisement in the local newspapers and invite applications from the eligible Persons with Disabilities (PwDs) candidates as per promsions of the Scheme.
i) The Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (DEPwD), Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India will fund the entire expenditure of coaching provided to selected PwDs candidates as per the terms and conditions of the Scheme and agreement entered into with the concerned coaching institute.
ii) Fee component will be released directly to the coaching institutes/centers concerned in the form of grant-in-aid.
iii) Grant-in-aid will be released to the institutes concerned in two equal installments every year.
iv) The first installment will be released to the institutes immediately after their empanelment. However, the second installment of grant-in-aid will be released (in shape of reimbursement) to the coaching institutes on production of Utilization Certificate, details of expenditure made, audited accounts certified by a Chartered Accountant, details of courses conducted and number of students coached.
v) After completion of first year, the performance of the institutes will be assessed before releasing the fund for the subsequent year. The release of fund after every year will depend on the satisfactory performance of the institute during the previous year.
vi) The grant-in-aid for 2nd and 3rd year would be released to empanelled coaching institutes only after receipt of due Utilization Certificate, list of students coached with the previous year’s grant, audited accounts in respect of previous year’s funds and performance of students coached during previous year.
vii) The Empanelled institutes should register themselves in National Scholarship Portal (www.scholarships.gov.in) (whenever the portal will be made operational for this scheme).
viii) The applicants (students/trainees) should submit their application for coaching through the on-line system by the last date prescribed for receipt of applications. All requisite documents like photograph, proof of age, disability certificate, income certificate of the parent, etc. duly filled in the prescribed format will be required to be uploaded in the on-line system. [However, until this scheme of Free Coaching starts through National Scholarship Portal, the candidates shall submit their applications to the Empanelled Coaching Institutes of their choice through off-line method]
ix) The Nodal Officer nominated by Empanelled institutes shall verify the applications and process the same and forward the final list in PFMS portal for disbursal of stipend and Special allowance.
x) Stipend and Special allowance admissible to the candidates shall be released directly to their Bank Accounts through PFMS portal under Aadhaar based DBT by DEPwD.
Quantum of Coaching Fees
The quantum of coaching fees will be as agreed to in the agreement between the DEPwD and the coaching institute at the time of empanelment.
Eligibility criteria and selection of candidates:
(i) Free coaching under this scheme will be available to students with disabilities who are covered under the Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunity, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995 and the National Trust for the Welfare of Persons with Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Mental Retardation and Multiple Disabilities Act, 1999 and any other relevant Act issued by the Govt, of India from time to time.
(ii) The students should be selected by the coaching institute based on academic criteria prescribed by the institute itself. However, the institute may relax these criteria for PwDs candidates as per terms to be laid down in the Agreement.
(iii) The candidate should be eligible to appear at the examination for which he/she is obtaining the coaching under this Scheme.
(iv) Income Ceiling: Only students with disabilities having total family income from all sources of Rs.6.00 lakh or less per annum will be eligible to apply under the Scheme.
(v) Benefits under the Scheme can be availed by a particular student not more than once, irrespective of the number of chances he/she may be entitled to take in a particular competitive examination. The coaching institute will also be required to take an undertaking from the students that they have not taken benefit more than once under the Scheme.
(vi) Candidates who are not availing the benefits of free coaching under any other scheme of the Central Govt, are eligible under the scheme. The coaching institute will also be required to take an undertaking from the students that they have not availed benefit of free coaching under any other scheme of the Central Govt.
(vii) However, notwithstanding the provision at para (v) above, where examination is conducted in two stages viz. Preliminary and Main, the candidates will be entitled for free coaching for both the stages of examinations.
They will be entitled for free coaching separately for both the Preliminary and Main examinations as per their convenience. However, there will be no restriction in number of chances for coaching for Interview, if the candidate is selected for interview.
(viii) Attendance: In the event of any student remaining absent for more than 15 days without any valid reason, benefits of free coaching to him/her shall be discontinued under intimation to the DEPwD.
(ix) Duration of Coaching Assistance: On completion of the first year, if a student wants to continue for the second year, he/she has to apply for renewal of coaching assistance.
Monthly stipend of Rs.2500/- (Rupees Two Thousand and Five Hundred only) per student will be paid for local students for attending the coaching class. Similarly, Rs.5000/- (Rupees Five Thousand only) per student will be paid p.m for outstation students. Special Allowance of Rs.2,000/- (Rupees Two Thousand only) per student p.m will be paid to students towards reader allowance, escort allowance, helper allowance etc.
i) The institutes shall maintain complete progress record of the coaching and selection of the candidates.
ii) Grant-in-aid released to the institutes shall be dealt with in a separate account by them.
iii) The institutes shall utilize the grant-in-aid only for the purposes laid down in this Scheme. In the event of the grantee institute acting in contravention of this condition, the institute will be liable to refund the amount received with 18% penal interest and other action, as deemed necessary.
Review of performance and monitoring
i) There will be a review of performance of the coaching institutes at the end of 3rd year of empanelment. The assessment will be based on the results of PwDs candidates provided coaching under the Scheme and the success rate enjoyed by coached students in clearing competitive examination for which he/she has received coaching.
ii) The DEPwD reserves the right to conduct random inspection/check from time to time of any of the empanelled institutes.
iii) The DEPwD reserves the right to discontinue funding under the Scheme at any point of time if the performance of the coaching institute is found to be unsatisfactory.
Date of Commencement of the Scheme: The scheme will be effective from 1st April, 2017.
Jurisdiction of the Scheme: The jurisdiction of the Scheme is up to providing prescribed financial support to the selected candidates for receiving coaching assistance in specified courses.
The Scheme does not cover employment aspects of the beneficiaries and also does not provide for any kind of assistance to them in seeking employment or admission anywhere, after his/her having availed of the benefits of free coaching.
Furnishing of False Information: If any candidate has furnished any false information/document and is established as false, he/she will be debarred from the award and if he/she has availed of it or is availing, an action will be initiated for recovery of the amount spent with 15% compound interest thereon. Such candidate will also be black listed for future and appropriate legal action can be taken against the candidates.
Litigations: Any litigation on matters arising out of this scheme will be subject to sole jurisdiction of the courts situated in National Capital Territory of Delhi.
The scheme will be implemented by the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities. In order to implement the scheme, the Department may have to meet certain administrative expenses like –
a) Engagement of manpower at the Department for execution of the scheme. As the magnitude of data to be entered and processed would be enormous and the scheme gets implemented over the years there would be a need to engage qualified skilled personnel right from the beginning to deal with the scheme.
b) Publishing advertisements and other publicity materials to generate awareness among the targeted beneficiary group.
Accordingly, a provision of not exceeding 3% of the total budget allocated to the scheme shall be kept as administrative expenditure.
For more details of the scheme, please visit website of Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities at disabilityaffairs.gov.in