Community school teachers wait for their salary to celebrate DashainSchools to close from Friday for Dashain holidays, but teachers’ salaries are yet to be released.
Dashain is just around the corner. Community schools will be closed for Dashain vacation from Friday. However, the school teachers in Dolpa, a remote district of Karnali Province, have not received their salaries for the past three months.
This is because the District Treasury Comptroller Office (DTCO) is yet to issue the budget to the local units. The Office said it could not release the salary for the first three months of the current fiscal year since the local units had not submitted their reports on budget expenditure of the last fiscal year.
Haridutta Neupane, the account officer at the DTCO, said two of the total eight local units in the district had not submitted their expenditure report so far. “We could not release the budget due to the failure of the local units to submit the report on time. We will release the budget within a couple of days, if the reports are submitted as soon as possible,” said Neupane. According to him, Thulibheri Municipality and Mudkechula Rural Municipality have not submitted the reports so far.
There are around 600 teachers in 112 community schools in Dolpa, and they receive their salary quarterly. Accordingly, a teacher should receive his/her salary for three Nepali months of Shrawan, Bhadra, Aswin as well as Dashain allowance.
Without their salaries, the teachers are going to have a dry Dashain. “We cannot manage expenditure to observe Dashain if we are not given our salary. Teachers who are from outside the district can’t go home to be with their families. How can they go home without money?” said Sher Bahadur Bhudha, a teacher at Dhrubatara Basic School in Dunai. He said both the local units and the DTCO should work responsibly so that the government employees would get their salaries on time.
The local units, however, claimed that they had already submitted the preliminary report of budget expenditure. “We have already submitted the report. If we have to submit additional details we will submit soon,” said Santosh Khadka, the account officer of Thulibheri Municipality.
It’s not only the teachers who have not received their salaries. Other government employees also have not received their salaries. “The salary of the employees who belonged to those offices that were merged under the provincial government could not be released due to some technical problems. We will resolve it soon and release the budget,” said Neupane. The provincial government has already sent a letter to the DTCO to resolve the issue.