SRINAGAR: The J&K government has sought funds from the Government of India (GoI) to reconstruct school buildings which were burnt down in 2016.
Speaking to Kashmir Reader, Commissioner Secretary School Education, Farooq Ahmad Shah, said, “We have forwarded a detailed project report (DPR) to HRD ministry (GoI) for funds to reconstruct the buildings which were damaged in 2016.”
He said that the government was hopeful that GoI’s Human Resource Development (HRD) ministry will “consider and release the money. (Education) minister has already requested the HRD minister in this regard,” he added.
Over 30 schools were burnt down mysteriously during the 2016 uprising. A PIL was filed in J&K High Court to seek reconstruction of the damaged school buildings.
Following the court directions, the chief education officers of the concerned districts were asked by Directorate of School Education (DSEK) to submit DPRs, which were sent to administrative section. However, no funding has been received so far.
On August 11, the court came down heavily on the J&K Government over the issue and gave it four weeks to finalise the entire process required to re-construct the schools and directed the commissioner secretary to forward a report to the finance secretary for the same.
The report is to be presented before the court in the next hearing.
A source in DSEK told said that the DPR in this regard was forwarded “to higher authorities several times, but nothing has been done so far”.
The issue came to fore on Sunday at a meeting held by DSEK in Srinagar, which was chaired by Shah.
A CEO rank officer revealed that his district received no money in this regard although the DPR was submitted several months early.b “We were asked today to submit new proposals if there was any requirement,” he said on Sunday.
He said that the authorities assured that money will be made available within some days and there was possibility that requirements of fencing, water and toilets too will be fulfilled in the same project.
“The DPR has reached its final level,” one CEO claimed. Another officer said that he had no requirement to reconstruct the damaged building as his school had space to accommodate the students.
CEO Pulwama, M A Salroo, said that one school which was shown in the list was actually damaged by an electric shock. The school is situated at Parigami in Kakpora zone.
On the investigation part, court was informed that out of 49 cases registered with the police, only three persons had been brought before court.
In 9 cases, the culprits were untraced, 32 cases were under investigation, and one case had been closed.
It was also informed that only one private school was burnt down during this period in 2016.