Continuation of Education a priority for LAHDC Kargil, Rs 2 Crores allotted for Winter Tuitions, Outbreak of COVID playing spoilsport: CEC Khan
Vaccination of children being fast tracked, winter tuitions to be allowed in the second week of January
Jammu, 6 Jan 2021: Chairman and Chief Executive Councilor LAHDC Kargil Feroz Ahmed Khan who is currently in Jammu to inspect the works of the Kargil Girls Hostel, construction of Library block at the Kargil Boys Hostel Channi and resolution of land issue regarding Kargil Bhawan Jammu with the Jammu Development Authority while speaking to our reporter said that continuation of education has been top priority for the LAHDC Kargil during the pandemic. He said that the Council is constantly monitoring the situation and have fast tracked the inoculation of students aged 15-18. Reacting to the apprehension among the civil society in Kargil regarding the shutting of winter tuitions, CEC Khan said that the Health Department has been instructed to complete the vaccination of all eligible students at the earliest and that winter tuitions will be allowed in the district, with proper adherence to SOPs, by the second week of January.
He further asserted that the LAHDC Kargil has, for the first time, earmarked an amount of Rs 2 Crores for establishing 150 Winter Tuition Centers at the village level to ensure that education reaches the last standing student in the remotest of the villages of District Kargil. However, due to the rising cases of COVID19 in the district has affected this ambitious programme of the Council. He said that when compared to all neighbouring districts, schools have been kept open for the maximum time in Kargil. It was only in the month of December 2021 when a number of school students from schools tested positive for COVID 19 that schools were closed again.
CEC Khan who also holds the portfolio of Executive Councilor (Education), LAHDC Kargil said that a number of initiatives have been taken successfully for the continuation of education during the pandemic. These initiatives included community classes in open air, Online Classes, Radio Classes etc. The Council also encouraged NGOs to conduct schemes like the Khangrtsa Yontan in which doorstep education was provided to the students.
Responding to a question on his recent visit to Pune, he said that the Pune visit was also very fruitful from the point of view of educational collaborations. During the Kargil Mahotsav, he said, the Vice Chancellor of Savitribai Phule Pune University was requested for collaborations with the University of Ladakh for Kargil specific issues especially in Geology. He further informed our reporter that the team led by Jim also interacted with students hailing from Kargil and studying in Pune. He said that over 40 students from Kargil are currently pursuing education under the aegis of the Sarhad Foundation Pune. During an event at the residence if the Mayor of Pune, Mentors teaching students of Jawadiah Project CARE Kargil were also felicitated. Discussions were also held for extending such online initiatives.
When asked regarding the closure of winter Tuitions in Kargil, he said that the decision was based upon the report from the CMO Kargil wherein it was reported that there has been a spike in COVID 19 cases in the district. He assured that the Council views the issue seriously and is working for the dual purpose of keeping COVID-19 at bay and to ensure continuity of education of the children.
When asked about the issues being faced by students outside Kargil, especially in Jammu, CEC Khan said that the Council has come up with a Girls Hostel at Jammu having a seating capacity of 200 girl students at a cost of Rs 16.53 crores in two phases. He said that all efforts are being made to make the hostel functional from the upcoming academic session. Furthermore, on the demand of the students residing in the Kargil Boys Hostel Channi he said that establishment of Library at the hostel is already in its final stage. He said that he will be visiting the hostel to inspect the ongoing work in the coming days.
He also dwelt at length about the construction of a Kargil Bhawan at Jammu and the land issue concerning it. He said that talks have been going on for quite some time now and a high level meeting has been scheduled with the Jammu Development Authority on the 7th of this month.
Responding to allegations in the social media spheres where it was alleged that CEC Khan was visiting schools in Delhi and at the same time educational institutions are shut in Kargil, he said that the visit to Delhi schools were made on December 20, 2021 and that even the Delhi Govt have closed the schools in addition to imposition of strict restrictions like weekend curfew to keep COVID-19 at bay. With the beginning of the inoculation of students in the age group 15-18, CEC Khan expressed hope that the situation in Kargil will be contained in time and asked for all the stake holders to cooperate with the authorities.
On a question regarding the heavy snowfall in the region, he said that the he has directed the acting CEC and rest of the members of the Executive Council to monitor the situation. They have held meetings to ensure proper supply of essential services, connectivity and clearance of all internal roads. Further, he informed that keeping in view the heavy snowfall, slippery conditions, and risk avalanches he has written to the LG Ladakh to start the AN-32 Air Service and Pawan Hans Helicopter Service at the earliest. He said that the Council is constantly taking up the issue of commencement of civilian air service from Kargil Airport at all levels and are hopeful for its early commencement.
He appreciated the work of the Kargil Police Department, Traffic Police, Mechanical Division Kargil, BRO authorities, Officers & officials of the Sub Divisional Administration and District Administration for keeping the Zojila Pass open for the maximum duration.