Published: 05th October 2021
Shortage of Class 11 seats in Kerala cause uproar in the Assembly, despite Minister Sivankutty's assurances
The leader of the opposition took the Education Minister to the cleaners over the matter and ensured that it did not go down with a whimper
The Kerala government is in a bit of a soup regarding the shortage of Class 11 seats for those candidates who have cleared the SSLC exam in the state. And the state's Education Minister, V Sivankutty's statements on the subject are not helping matters.
The third session of the assembly commenced October 4, and the opposition, United Democratic Front (UDF), passed a motion to adjourn the house so a discussion can take place on the matter of the state government not allotting enough Class 11 seats to the students. The opposition staged a walk-out from the Assembly, after taking digs at V Sivankutty for not doing enough to safeguard the interests of the students.
When asked about the shortage, Sivankutty said seats in the private sector will be increased in order to compensate. However, this remark didn't go too well the leader of the opposition who V D Satheesan who said, “The government’s much-touted General Education Protection Campaign was meant for strengthening schools in the public sector. Now the government is pushing students from struggling families to unaided schools that are demanding huge donations for Class 11 seats.”
The leader of the opposition also reminded the ruling party that directives have been issued to not cram too many students in a single classroom, and the lack of infrastructure to accommodate students will make them meaningless. Satheesan went as far as questioning Sivankutty's appointment as the state's Education Minister, scorning at his claim that there were vacant Class 11 seats in the state.
The state's former Health Minister and current CPM MLA K K Shailaja also questioned the government slacking off in this matter. The opposition parties claim that the students from poor families are bearing the brunt of this lack of initiative from the government. For his part, Sivankutty tried to assure the agitated MLAs that seats will be available for all Class 11 applicants in the allotment process that is currently ongoing.