A government-run school in Bihar’s Lalganj area has been found guilty of segregating students on the basis of their caste and religion.
The GA Higher Secondary School apparently has separate classrooms for students belonging to the upper castes, OBC and Dalits. Even Hindu and Muslim students are made to sit separately.
They even have different attendance registers for students, with their caste added as a prefix to their names in the record.
This discriminatory policy has been going on in the school for many years now, until recently, when a girl from the school decided to do something about it.
Little Girl Who Became A Source Of Change
She wrote a letter to the Lalganj Block Education Officer, Arvind Tiwari explaining the state of affairs at the institution as well as demanding strict action against the same.
The little girl also mentioned in her letter how doing this was against the fundamental rights of the students and how it can have a negative impact on the impressionable minds of children.
On receiving the complaint, the Education Officer himself visited the school to inquire about the matter and indeed, found the accusation to be true.
‘‘On the face of it, it appears to be true. We are sending a report to the District Education Officer in this matter and action will be initiated.’’
The Education Minister for the state, Mr. Krishanand Prasad Verma has said that those found guilty in the case will be punished as this kind of segregation on the basis of caste and creed is against the law.
The Principal’s Side Of The Story
The principal of the school, Meena Kumari, however, said that the segregation has been done to ensure “smooth working and implementation” of different beneficiary schemes of the government.
She added that the parents had never objected to this practice and that “no discrimination ever took place in the school on the basis of caste and religion.”
Does keeping students in different sections on the basis of whether they belong to the upper castes or the minority not count as discrimination?
A Comparison With Other Education Boards
Contrary to what’s been happening in this Government-run Bihar school, the ICSE and CBSE boards operating in big cities, as well as the University Grants Commission (UGC) of India, have a different story to tell.
During the board examination or the semester exams for the Central University, the students are only told to mention their roll numbers on the answer scripts and not their names. This is done to prevent discrimination based on caste and religion by the examiner.
If we have such provisions for private education boards as well as for CBSE in metropolitan cities and others, how did the government fail to monitor GA Higher Secondary School in Bihar where this discriminatory policy has been followed for 4 years now?
Surely, there has been a lack of proper inspection by the State Education Ministry over these years.
And also, by doing this, what kind of values are we teaching these young minds and what type of image of the country are we creating before the world?
India is a land famous for its diverse cultures and spirit of brotherhood, but with these kinds of shrewd and insensitive practices prevalent in different parts of the country, I’m afraid we’re heading towards doom.
Image Credits: Google Images
Find the blogger at @MoulshreeS