Odisha schools being merged, not closed: Govt chief whip

Bhubaneswar: Government chief whip Pramila Mallik, in a statement regarding the closure of many schools in Odisha over poor enrolment, said in the Legislative Assembly today that the schools are being merged, not closed.

During discussion on a motion in the House, Mallik said there are many schools that have two teachers for mere eight students. Such schools will continue to run if the number of students increase, she said.

The motive of the state government is not to deprive anyone of education, she added.

On the other hand, Deputy Leader of Opposition Bishnu Charan Sethi in his reaction said that the decision of the government will have serious consequences. “We will stage a sit-in near the podium of the Speaker until rollback of the decision,” he said.

The House had yesterday witnessed uproarious scenes over the issue as opposition BJP and Congress members created ruckus demanding immediate withdrawal of the government’s decision, resulting in multiple adjournments.

Congress MLA Tara Prasad Bahinipati had threatened to commit suicide in front of the Speaker if the state government did not rollback its decision.

Also read- Odisha Legislator Bangs Head Against Assembly Speaker’s Podium.

School and Mass Education Minister Samir Ranjan Dash has said the government’s intention is not to harass the students by closing down schools. The government is committed to provide quality education, he added.

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