West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday (December 3) announced that her government will provide free tabs to 9.5 lakh students in government schools and madrasas to facilitate online education.

The Chief Minister said, “We will give tablets to 9.5 lakh students of all state-aided Higher Secondary schools and Madrasas. 
There are about 14,000 state-aided Higher Secondary schools and 636 government-funded Madrasas. Every student will get the tablets so that they can follow the online classes.”

There are around 36,000 government and government-aided secondary schools, around 14,000 higher secondary schools and 636 madrasahs in the state.

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Many students in higher secondary classes are not being able to attend online classes because they do not have smartphones or compatible gadgets. The CM’s announcement is said to be an effective measure to facilitate them.

Banerjee said that the tenders will be floated soon to ensure that students get the gadgets on time to prepare for their higher secondary examinations.

The Chief Minister also announced 3% dearness allowance for 10 lakh state government employees from January 1, 2021. This would cost the state exchequer Rs 2200 crore.

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Speaking in another program during the day Banerjee said that Information Technology (IT) firms in West Bengal have registered 133% growth in the last eight years and IT exports have gone up by 175%.

“Many more investments are coming. On December 1, we cleared 20 proposals of setting up IT offices at Bengal Silicon Valley Hub with a proposed investment of Rs 3000 crore. They would directly employ 9000 IT professionals,” Banerjee said at a program