NHRC serves notice to Punjab government over lack of educational facilities in Kaluwara village

Students walk on foot in slushy banks of Sutlej, board a boat to cross the river and walk for 4 kms along border with Pakistan to reach nearest school.

Punjab school students. (Picture: Shutterstock)Punjab school students. (Picture: Shutterstock)

Press Trust of India | November 17, 2022 | 10:54 PM IST

NEW DELHI: The National Human Rights Commission has served a notice to the Punjab government over a media report that students in Kaluwara village in the state do not have access to proper educational facilities.

Taking suo motu cognizance of the media report, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) said the students, especially the girls in Kaluwara village, first walk on foot in slushy banks of the river Sutlej, then board a 'berhi' (wooden boat) and cross the river to walk for another 4 kms along the border with Pakistan before finally reaching the Government Senior Secondary School in Gatti Rajoke area of Ferozpur district.

“The media report further revealed that Kaluwara is surrounded on three sides by river water and by the border fence on the fourth. During heavy rain, the river floods fields and homes, forcing the residents to spend days on roof tops.

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The village houses 50 families and has only one primary school. Most of the girls studying in the primary school drop out after class 5,” the NHRC statement said. The Commission has also sought a report from the Punjab government and asked it to mention what steps have been taken or proposed to provide better and hassle-free access to students in the area, either by building a new school at a nearby place or by providing better commuting facilities.

“The Commission has observed that it becomes imperative that the state government makes it possible for every child to get an access to the education system, without much hindrance or difficulty so that the fundamental significance of the life of an individual can be achieved,” the statement added.

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