PAMPORE: The teachers of Government Primary School, Samboora, Pampore, in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district have been unable to resume class work after the summer break as the school’s whole building is surrounded by knee-deep water.
The incessant rains in July, particularly of the past 10 days, have turned the school compound into a pool, a local, Mohammad Younis, told Kashmir Reader.
Due to the poor planning of the local Block Development Office, a drain passing through the school has been let into its compound, turning it into a pool of standing water, especially during the rains.
The drainage was constructed from the Herpora habitation and ends at the school compound, releasing all its sewage into the grounds, Younis said.
Locals alleged that the school compound was in good condition till the Rural Development Department constructed a pathway along the school premises and raised its height by about a foot by order of the Block Development Officer (BDO), Pampore, thus choking the drainage, which ultimately found place in the low-lying school compound.
The residents alleged that they had objected to the BDO’s move at the time but the said official continued with the work.
“This developmental work has turned out to be a mess for the school, and the teachers concerned are compelled to either suspend their class work or close the school during and after the rains,” said a resident, adding that the villagers had taken the issue to higher-ups who had assured them that they would find a solution. Nothing, however, has happened, leaving the students to suffer and the teachers to get taunted for suspending classes.
The local residents also told Kashmir Reader that they had moved from pillar to post and, in 2016, had even brought the matter to the notice of the then director School Education, Kashmir, Shah Faesal, who had assured immediate help.
“Due to continuous strikes in that particular year, no one pursued the case. Unfortunately, the director also got changed, leading to mayhem,” said another resident, Javaid Ahmad, who added that due to official apathy, government schools in Kashmir were on the verge of closure.
Zonal Education Officer, Pampore, Ghulam Ahmad Dar told Kashmir Reader that he has personally approached the Assistant Commissioner Development (ACD) Pulwama and has asked him to redress the grievance of the people at earliest.
Meanwhile, the BDO Pampore was unavailable for talking to as he was attending a function. When this reporter went to his office, he found the same locked.
The teachers told Kashmir Reader that they have brought the matter to the notice of the ACD many times but no action has been taken yet regarding the matter.
Meanwhile, the ACD Pulwama has written a letter to the BDO Pampore and has advised him to examine the grievance of the school staff immediately and to take appropriate measures so that it could be redressed.