Kids engaged in building work
Date: Thu, 2012-03-29
PARADIP: Picture this: Little ones carrying buckets of construction material in a school of Bidhyadharpur panchayat under Raghunathpur block. The allegation of involving kids in the construction work has spread resentment among the villagers.
Sources said school headmasters have reportedly been directed by Sarva Sikhya Abhijan authority to complete construction of buildings before the summer vacation. And in an attempt to expedite the work, the students are allegedly being made to work after the annual examination. The officials are said to be aware of the development.
This is a case at Bansidhar Sarala Vidyapeeth where work on the school building is on. The school has about 177 students studying in Class I to VIII.
Former sarpanch of Bidhyadharpur panchayat Deepak Ranjan Mallick said students, including small girls, have been pressed into work, including cleaning of urinals and latrines.
A Class II student said they are made to carry chips in buckets during the school hour. Another Class VI student added that they carry the chips to the roof of the building.
The school headmaster has, however, denied the allegations. “The students had cleaned the premises to have mid-day meal and there is no question of engaging them in construction work,” he said.
District Project Coordinator, SSA, Nirmal Chandra Das said he was yet to receive a complaint.
On the other hand, District Inspector of Schools, Tirtol, Gadadhar Behera said, “We have received complaints from locals and an official has been asked to conduct an inquiry,” he said.
It may be recalled that a student of Nalibar area had died in a road accident when sent on an errand by a teacher during school hour.
A departmental inquiry is on.