Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Baripada, Jan 27:
In a one of its kind incident in Odisha, about 100 girl students of Pakatia Government Girls’ High School in Mayurbhanj district last night walked about 25 km to meet the collector and convey their grievance.
The students had been complaining against the alleged misbehaviour of hostel authorities and citing that their study is being affected because of administrative negligence. However, no corrective measures had been taken.
The girls started their march at about 7 PM last night from the hostel and reached the collector’s office at about midnight after a five hour long march. Even though the school authorities, local administration and local cops attempted to convince them out of the march, the girls were in no mood to listen.
At the end of their wits, the cops and local elders started escorting the girls in their march to the collector’s office in the cold night. The students staged a dharna after reaching the collector’s office forcing him to attend work at about 1 AM.
The girls, however, withdrew their dharna after collector Rajesh Pravakar Patil assured them to take necessary steps.
“The hostel authorities watch TV in mobile phones during study hours and go to sleep after 7 PM. This makes most students follow suit. They don’t care for our studies. Food quality there is pathetic. The problems are many in the hostel,” said one student.
“We have submitted a written complaint to the collector pertaining to the issues and he has assured to take necessary steps. Earlier, we had reported our concerns to the DI, but nothing had been done. That prompted us to take this decision today,” said another.
The deputy collector, however, reprimanded the girls for walking down at night and not listening to elders. Further, he has ordered an inquiry into the incident.