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Muddy Mess Keeps Students Under House Arrest

2016-08-22 14:05


Santipur, Aug. 22: Bikash Kundu, Tentul Moni, Jhuma Sardar and many like them have not been allowing their wards to go to their school for about past two weeks. They blame the muddy mess on the way to the school that has forced them to keep their wards ‘house arrest’.

Not just these three guardians, rather most of the guardians of the two hundred students of Methirdanga junior high school and Methidrdanga primary school and fifty other children of an ICDS centre in Nadia’s Santipur have not been allowing their wards to attend the school due to muddy condition of the Methirdanga-Krisinhapur Kalna ghat road since the recent spate of incessant rain that began around a fortnight ago.

The road is also used by students of other three schools located in adjacent areas, who have also been facing similar difficulties accessing the road.

The parents are afraid of fall on the slushy road which has become nearly inaccessible due to rain. They are also afraid that the children could even slip into the deep pool of water that has logged in the adjacent jute fields; which has been made vulnerable due to excavation of earth under the 100days work scheme.

Their fear has been coupled up with the death of an 8 year old girl last year, who fell on the muddy road and eventually slipped into the adjacent water logged agricultural land only to be electrocuted.

As a result students like Sushmita Kundu of class seven, Taniya Moni of class 8, Jhuma Sardar of class 8, are not being able to attend school as the large part of the four km stretch of Methirdanga-Kalna ghat road turned into a pool of slush after the recent spells of rain.

Bikash Kundu said: “Walking through the slushy stretch without slipping and falling is just leap of faith.”

“I can not allow my daughter to go through this road. It is quite risky as walking on it could invite danger. I am afraid that the children could slip into the adjacent deep pool of water. In last year one girl died being slipped into the water”, Bikash, a farm-hand by profession said.

Local sources said, in last year Sujata Sardar, a class 2 girl died after she slipped into the water and got electrocuted.

In last week, a lady teacher of the Methirdanga junior high school also fell in to the water similarly, but luckily escaped unhurt.

Nevertheless, on Monday few students like Moonmoon Dhali of class 8, Sudip Sardar (class 4), Sibanth Sardar (class 4) were seen trying hard to access the road to reach the school.

Moonmoon said: “I will miss the class unless I go. We are poor and cannot afford private tutor. So attending school is a necessity to me despite the bad road”.

Anirban Sikdar, head master of Methirdanga junior high school admitted an alarming fall in attendance due to the poor road.

“Our school is a new one with limited students. But, the messy road has made the attendance poorer as many guardians are not allowing their children to attend school until the monsoon is over and the road become dry”, he added.

The school which was set up in 2010 with three classes from five to eight has only about 100 students. The primary section and ICDS centre has about another 100 students. The three units located in the same campus.

There are two others schools Barodanga primary schools and Nrisinhapur high schools, located about 200-meter away. The students of the two schools also use this road to reach their school.

Clerk of MethirdangaJunior high school Samar Biswas, a resident of adjacent Sahebdanga area said: “In the last 30 years the situation of this road remained same. I was a student of the Methirdanga primary school. I used to come to school braving the muddy mess. The situation has not changed since then. This is the main road in the area which is being largely used by the residents of about six villages. Around five hundred students of different schools located in adjacent areas regularly being compelled to use this road despite such slushy state”.

“There is an alternative road to reach school but that makes the journey long and time taking and usually avoided by all. We have repeated appeals to the local panchayat body, but nothing was done so far”, he added further.

Local youths Ganga Sardar and Pradip Biswas, who read in SantipurCollege said: “For young like us accessing the road on a cycle or bike has become literally impossible due to threat of fall. Nevertheless, hundreds of students and local brave the risk regularly to reach Santipur town on the other hand”.

Pradhan of Trinamul Congress run Haripur gram panchayat Namita Sarkar said: “The grievance of the locals is quite genuine. The road would soon be constructed pucca under pradhan mantri sadak yojona. I am hopeful that the work would be started immediate after the monsoon”. 

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