Bengal education minister cancels London tour amid WBSSC crisis

Amid the West Bengal School Service Commission (WBSSC) recruitment scam imbroglio, state Education Minister Bratya Basu and education secretary Manish Jain have cancelled their official tours to London.

State education department sources said that Basu and Jain were supposed to leave for London on Saturday to attend a two-day education seminar from May 23, organised by the UK government.

“Some MoUs pertaining to faculty exchange were also supposed to be signed during London visit. However, because of the evolving situation, the education minister felt it necessary to be in the state and hence has cancelled his visit,” confirmed a bureaucrat associated with the state education department who did not wish to be named.

Already, the former state education minister Partha Chatterjee and the current minister of state for education Paresh Chandra Adhikari are under the scanner of Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in connection with the scam. The state government initiative of fresh teachers’ recruitment is also under the scanner of Calcutta High Court.

“In such a situation, the current state education minister did not think it wise to leave the country and felt that his presence in the state was necessary. So, he cancelled his London trip,” the state education department official said.

Meanwhile, there had been some changes in the ranks of the state education department. Following the resignation of the erstwhile WBSSC chairman Siddhartha Majumdar in the midst of this controversy, the state government appointed the state education commissioner and Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer Subho Chakraborty as the new WBSSC chairman.

Another IAS officer Arup Sengupta has been appointed as the new education commissioner.




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