MHA seeks feedback from J&K within a week
Srinagar: Two days after the School Education Department said it “intends” to reopen schools from mid-June, the J&K government on Wednesday said it had not taken any decision over reopening the institutions.
The School Education Department issued an order on Monday saying it intends to reopen schools in J&K from mid-June while asking schools to keep hand sanitizers and hand gloves available for students.
But official handout quoted advisor K K Sharma saying that the government “has not taken any decision to open schools” from June 15.
“However, instructions have been issued to schools to ensure sanitisation of school premises in view of COVID-19, “ he said.
The government’s U-turn comes after the Union Minister of State, Jitendra Singh said he had spoken to the J&K government to defer reopening of schools from mid-June.
Meanwhile, the union Ministry of Home Affairs has asked the Jammu and Kashmir government for a feedback over reopening of educational institutions in the region within a week.
The development has prompted the Directorate of School Education Kashmir (DSEK) to ask wider consultations from stakeholders including field officers, school and village heads, parents and municipalities in this regard.
A communiqué issued Wednesday by the DSEK and addressed to all the Chief Education Officers in the valley revealed that the MHA had on Saturday asked the J&K government to provide the feedback “within a week’s time for taking a final decision about opening of educational institutions in the country and asked for wide consultation to discuss the issues and concerns with all stakeholders”.
The DSEK has asked the respective CEOs to undertake “wider consultations at the institutional level with parents and other stakeholders like ZEOs, institution heads, Sarpanchs, Gram Panchayat, municipalities”.
The directorate has asked the CEOs to file a comprehensive report within three days positively about the feedback by the stakeholders over reopening the institutions along with their own comments.
The MHA, which recently allowed hotels, restaurants and shopping malls to reopen from June 8 under ‘Unlock 1’, maintained that the decision over reopening educational institutions will be taken in July after consultations with the stakeholders and once the union Health Ministry prepares standard operating procedure.