Kathmandu, June 2: A new provision included in the budget announcement about education that all secondary level private schools have to take responsibility of at least one public school for improving their academic condition has become a hot topic of discussion after Minister for Education, Science and Technology Giriraj Mani Pokharel said he was unaware about the provision. Though stakeholders, politicians and even the cadres of the ruling Nepal Communist Party criticised the Minister for the provision mentioned in 166th point of the budget, Minister Pokharel himself was unhappy with the provision and stated that this was not his provision. Issuing a press statement on Sunday, after three days of budget announcement, Minister Pokharel said the Finance Minister had announced the programme without consulting him. “The programme was not proposed by the Ministry, the Ministry will manage the programme properly now,” the statement read. Minister Pokharel further expressed his dissatisfaction over the budget for not increasing the salary of Early Childhood Development teachers though the Ministry had proposed for this. Now, a total of 26,000 ECD teachers are working under ECD programme paid only Rs 6000 per month. The government has drawn flak from stakeholders that that the socialist government’s budget formulated the programme in line with privatisation of public education. Speaking at the parliament, Hari Adhikari, parliamentarian from Gorkha, demanded for cancellation of the provision. Along with Adhikari, many parliamentarians expressed their ire on the provision. Responding to the queries on Monday, Finance Minister Dr Yubaraj Khatiwada said the government had introduced the provision as the private schools desired to assist public schools under the concept of corporate social responsibility. Though Minister Khatiwada has responded to the parliamentarians he did not say anything about Minister Pokharel’s statement.