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A New Look At Security Forces Occupying Schools

IMPHAL, Nov 26: With the Supreme Court of India, not at all amused with the numerous cases of child trafficking, on the pretext of providing them better educational facilities from the North East, including Manipur, the State Government is set to take a fresh look at security forces occupying school buildings, which have deprived a good number of children to their right to education.

According to an official source, after the security forces being deployed for counter insurgency operations and other purposes in Manipur started occupying the school buildings since 1998, children have not been able to go to their schools and study properly. As the school buildings have been occupied, classes for the students are being conducted from private residences or community halls.

In such a situation, the fate of the students in Manipur is uncertain although the Government of India has recently announced the implementation of Right to Education Act to ensure education to every child.

The school buildings which are currently being occupied by security forces in Manipur include Karang Primary School (since 2006) and Saiton High School (since 2009) in Bishnupur district, Sajik Tampak Junior High School (since 2004) in Chandel district, Singat Government High School (since 1998), Songdoh Government Junior High School (since 2010) and Hengkot Aided JB School (since 2005) in Churachandpur district, Awangkhul LP School (since 2005), Charoi Chagotlong Junior High School (since 2005) and Lamdangmei Junior High School (since 2004) in Tamenglong district.

After the building of Charoi Chagotlong Junior High School, located near Noney in Tamenglong district, has been occupied by the security forces, the classes of the students are being conducted from a rented house.

Taking serious note of the matter, the School Education Department, Government of Manipur has written to the Director of Union Ministry of Human Resource Development highlighting the plights of the students after their school buildings have been occupied by security forces, the source disclosed.

It may be noted that following the incident of rescuing many young children, who have been taken from North East region including Manipur on false promise of providing better education, from orphanages in Tamil Nadu, the Supreme Court has directed the DoNER Ministry to look after the infrastructural requirements for education in the North Eastern States.

(Courtesy: The Sangai Express)

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