Sajha MD caught in textbook scam

- BINOD GHIMIRE, Kathmandu

Mar 18, 2015-

A private publication house owned by Dolindra Prasad Sharma, managing director of the state owned Sajha Publication, has been found illegally publishing textbooks for grades six and seven.

A monitoring team from the Department of Education (DoE), raided the Oxford Publication House at Anamnagar on Tuesday and seized hundreds of units of textbooks that were unlawfully printed.

It was the second instance in a week where a private publisher was caught printing textbooks meant for public schools without the approval from concerned authority. On March 11,

the DoE had raided the Chhauni-based Mission Publication Pvt Ltd and recovered thousands of units of illegally printed textbooks for the same grades.

The government has allowed only 21 private publishers to print 18 million units of textbooks from grade one up to grade five while  Janak Sikshya Samagri Kendra (JSSK) has the sole right to print the textbooks for grade six and above.

The Central Level Textbooks Monitoring Committee, led by Dilli Rimal, has recommended the Curriculum Development Centre (CDC) to initiate action against Oxford Publications House as well as Mission Publications Pvt Ltd.

CDC Director Diwakar Dhungel, who is also the chairman of Sajha, vowed to book the two companies based on the existing legal provision.

The two publication houses could be blacklisted if they fail to furnish credible explanation, Dhungel said. Once the two companies have been blacklisted, he added, their cases would be forwarded to the District Administration Office.

After the publishing house owned by the managing

director of Sajha himself was caught printing the school level textbooks illegally, Education Minister Chitra Lekha Yadav has come under fire for choice of nominee.

Minister Yadav had appointed Sharma the managing director of Sajha

three months ago, despite protest from the employees of the government owned

publication.

Meanwhile, Sharma has claimed that the textbooks found by the monitoring team from his publication were stock from last year.

 “Oxford has not published any new textbooks. I had already written to the DoE, explaining that we have over 5,000 textbooks in the stock. I will explain all these things with proof when I submit the clarification,” he said.

Published: 19-03-2015 07:47

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