Mumbai: Often, students and parents are afraid of coming out against educational institutions fearing harassment. Forum for Fairness in Education, a non-governmental organisation has launched a new mobile application to give fears a backseat by assuring complainants of anonymity.
“We have filed over 40 PILs over two decades but the difficulty is always in getting people to come forward to complain. As a result, it is tough to get evidence to support their claims,” said Jayant Jain, president of the NGO which was formed in 1994.
The app also allows users to upload videos, photos and documents to support their complaint. There are separate drop down options for every kind of grievance, whether it is regarding fee hike, harassment or school bag weight. They can also elaborate and explain the problem.
On this free app, users can inform the NGO of their problem without being afraid of the consequences or being victimised. They have been assured their identity will be kept confidential except when required to be presented to the court. In that case too, it will be revealed only after taking their permission, assured Jayant.
“Many times there is confusion over which authority to approach or who can address in case problem. If they send us the complaint through this app we will forward it to the concerned authority,” he added.
Users can also check the status of their complaint. The app will also be educating its users on matters such as rules pertaining to fee hike and conducting weekly surveys on issues related to education. The latest survey is on demonetisation and its effects on the education field.
“The idea is to expose corruption in the education field,” said Jayant. The app called FFE INDIA is available on playstore.
While a parent Prasad Tulaskar whose child studies in a city school appreciated the app he said that there should be a regular appraisal of the app by the NGO as to how many issues it has resolved in a time frame.
Kandasamy Krishnan, an M.Com student was however skeptical of it. “How can we believe that the NGO will not disclose our name? What if they misuse it,” he asked.