Yogi Launches School Chalo Abhiyan, Lakh of Students Without Books, Uniforms
Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh (UP) chief minister (CM) Yogi Adityanath launched the School Chalo Abhiyan at UPS Jaichandpur Katghara in Shravasti district on Monday to ensure 100% enrolment at primary and upper primary schools in the state.
Adityanath distributed education kits containing school bags, shoes and socks, a football and books to five newly enrolled students and hearing aids and Braille kits to three physically challenged students. To encourage teachers, he awarded LED TVs to Atiya Parveen of UPS Siswa and Ankit Kumar Srivastava of Chahlawa school for improving the enrolment at their schools.
“Take every child to school, register them, provide them with facilities like free uniforms, books, bags, shoes, socks and sweaters, etc.,” Adityanath said on the occasion. However, there are lakhs of poor students of government primary schools in UP who lack school uniforms, shoes and bags.
Months ahead of the Assembly election, the state government announced to transfer Rs 1,100 directly to the bank accounts of parents of around 1.80 crore bona fide students of government and government-aided primary schools under the Basic Shiksha Parishad for purchasing school uniforms, sweaters, shoes, socks and bags.
However, a large number of students, who are mostly poor, attend school in slippers and without uniforms. For instance, nearly 5 lakh students enrolled in more than 2,500 schools (from classes one to eight) in Sitapur are without uniforms.
Several parents of such schoolchildren claimed that the nominal sum of Rs 1,100 has not been transferred to their bank accounts.
“All government primary schools in Sitapur started their sessions on April 1. But we cannot send our children to school without books and uniforms,” Shiv Charan, whose two children have been enrolled at a primary school in Sitapur, told Newsclick. He has neither received Rs 1,100 in his account nor can afford uniforms with his low income.
According to Ajit Kumar, Sitapur Basic Shiksha Adhikari (BSA), the basic education department has sent the names and details of students enrolled at the primary schools to the state government and is awaiting the budget.
Pramod Ram, whose son is in class seven at Composite Primary School, Kanpur, said that the School Chalo Abhiyan is useless when the state government doesn’t have resources.
On the first day of the campaign, the attendance at around 1,786 council schools in Kanpur was very less with only a few students present without uniforms and books. The smart classrooms at most schools were shut due to power cuts.
Due to the lack of budget, most school buildings could not be repaired and painted. The BSA of Kanpur claimed that the schools will be repaired soon as soon as the budget is sanctioned.
The story is similar in Agra, where students have not been provided new books and uniforms. Several schools lack drinking water and fans.
Sarvendra Vikram Bahadur Singh, director, basic education, UP, said that the tender for printing of textbooks was passed in December 2021 but due was delayed due to the Assembly election. However, he has instructed all the BSAs to take back the textbooks from old students.
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