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Bitter cold in Uttar Pradesh, no sweaters in schools leads to FIR

Kanpur: Temperatures have dipped to freezing levels in Uttar Pradesh but school children in government primary schools have either yet to get sweaters or have got sub standard one that are falling apart already.

Now an FIR has been registered against a Kanpur-based firm and its operator in connection with negligence in distribution of free sweaters to students of state government-run primary and junior high schools.

In the FIR, the firm and its operator have been charged under Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions), 406 (criminal breach of trust), 420 (cheating), 467 (forging official documents), 468 (forgery with purpose of cheating) and 471 (using forged document as genuine).

The FIR has been registered by Basic Shiksha Adhikari (BSA) Amar Kant Singh of Lucknow against the firm and its operator, Ashok Kumar Surekha of Kanpur at the Wazirganj police station here.

A senior official of the education department said the firm had placed its bid through e-tendering process for distribution of sweaters to 1,86,040 students of primary and upper primary high schools in Lucknow district on August 16, 2019.

He said the tender was given to the firm as they had put up the lowest bid after which purchase order was issued on November 16, 2019.

The firm was sent multiple reminders to complete the distribution work by December 1, 2019 but they failed to ensure full distribution.

The firm distributed sweaters only to 44,649 students, which is only 24 per cent of the total allotted work. It also misused government funds by placing inflated bills, the official added.

He said sweaters were distributed to students by hiring another firm.

“The BSA apprised Lucknow district magistrate Abhishek Prakash about non-completion of sweaters distribution following which the administration decided to register the FIR.

Inspector Wazirganj police station, Deepak Dubey, said police had summoned the firm’s operator to present documents and record his statements but so far he has not turned up. Dubey said the operator could be arrested if he did not turn up soon.

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