Exams under candle light: SHRC issues notices to education authorities

In winters, the petition reads, classrooms are cold and lack proper lighting facility in absence of electricity supply.

SHABIR IBN YUSUF
Srinagar, Publish Date: Nov 12 2018 11:33PM | Updated Date: Nov 13 2018 2:03AM
Exams under candle light: SHRC issues notices to education authoritiesFile Photo

The state human rights commission has issued notices to authorities of school education department in Kashmir asking them to explain why electricity supply, washrooms and boundary walls for most government schools has not been provided.

Chairman SHRC, Justice (Rtd) Bilal Nazki issued the notices to director of the school education department, commissioner secretary in-charge and chairmen of J&K Board of School Education in Srinagar and Jammu following a petition the commission received from Dr Muzaffer Bhat, a right to information activist.

Dr Bhat had earlier collected details of schools without the basic facilities from the education department through an application filed on behalf of Jammu & Kashmir Right to Information Movement (JK RTI Movement).

According to the reply from chief education officer (CEO) of Budgam, out of 1278 government schools 1036 had no electricity connections.

Bhat says a similar situation exists in other districts as well, as schools function without basic amenities like electricity, washrooms and compound walls.

“That it is most unfortunate to bring it to the kind notice of this commission that J&K  Board of School Education authorities are conducting exams both in summer and winter seasons,” Bhat said in petition.

“In summer season the students appearing for such exams are made to undertake studies and exams in scorching heat without any facility of fans in the classrooms.”

In winters, the petition reads, classrooms are cold and lack proper lighting facility in absence of electricity supply.

“Board authorities are conducting exams in a manner which even violates the basic human rights of the students.”

Numerous videos, photos and posts shared of social and mainstream media recently show students taking exams under candle light in freezing weather conditions.

The SHRC has posted the case for hearing on 29, January 2019 when school authorities of education department have been asked to be present.

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