A rented building with no playground for a school established in 1943

A rented building with no playground for a  school established in 1943

Insha Latief                                                                      
SRINAGAR: Despite being one of the oldest schools in Srinagar, the Government Middle School at Baba Pora Habba Kadal has been shuttling from one rented building to another.
“Those who are holding top positions in government have studied here in this school. Now the school is craving for their attention and nobody is helping us,” Farooq, a teacher at the school said.
The school, staffers said, was established in 1943. The building it operated from burnt down during the 90’s.
The school was moved to another building, but as the roll increased it was shifted to the present building at Baba Pora. Among the many problems the school faces, the biggest, the staff says, is lacking a playground.  “Where would seventy students play? There is a busy road right outside school. We can’t let them play there,” Farooq said. “A boy was hit by a car once thankfully he was not badly injured.”
The staff said that they had identified a new building for the school some years back. “At the new place, there was a nice ground with the building but the government process takes time. Officers change almost every day that leads to more delay. In 2014, all paper work was done but due to floods, everything was washed away and the matter was also put on hold,” a staffer said. The school has 70 students with seven teachers, but lacks a teacher for physical education, a peon and a sweeper. The stairs of the schools are broken. Many students and even teachers tumble down and get hurt.  “It is dark in corridor and I can’t see anything because we don’t have electricity connection in the corridors. Many times I have fallen down,” Amir, a student said.
Even during winters, there is no heating facility in classrooms. Many times, dogs have entered inside washrooms. Talking to Kashmir Reader, Khair-un-Nisa, Zonal Educational Officer Srinagar said that due to lack of land in Srinagar city, government schools are running from rented buildings.