Rafiabad locals move J&K high court, say minister blocking school upgrade
The fight over the upgrade of a local school between a National Conference minister and grassroots representatives of Rafiabad area in Baramulla district has reached the Jammu and Kashmir high court.chandigarh Updated: Jul 22, 2012 14:44 IST
The fight over the upgrade of a local school between a National Conference minister and grassroots representatives of Rafiabad area in Baramulla district has reached the Jammu and Kashmir high court.
Two panches, a local teacher and a social worker have approached the high court seeking implementation of an order pertaining to upgradation of their middle school to high school level under a centrally-sponsored scheme.
The petition alleged that minister of state for road and buildings Javed Ahmad Dar was blocking the upgradation of the middle school at Ladu-Ladoora village in Rafiabad.
According to the documents submitted with the petition, Dar has reportedly asked the concerned zonal education officer not to communicate the upgradation order to the local officials.
"The reason for delaying of communication of upgradation order of Government Boys Middle School Ladu-Ladoora to high school level under (centrally-sponsored) RMSA scheme is that the concerned MLA of Rafiabad has verbally directed to me not to communicate the upgradation order...because of the reasons best known to him (minister)," the zonal education officer of Rohama said in response to an RTI filed by the villagers early this month.
The petitioners said the school, established in 1954 as primary school and upgraded as middle school in 1964, was among 279 schools selected for upgradation under Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abiyan (RMSA) in the state.
The school confers to all the parameters laid down under RMSA scheme and is set to celebrate its golden jubilee in 2014, but some "vested interests" did not want it to flourish and deprive the area of secondary education, they claimed.
The high court, meanwhile, has issued notices on July 18 to Dar, the state government and the HRD Ministry seeking their response on the matter within two weeks.
When contacted on the issue, union HRD minister Kapil Sibal said he would get the matter inquired. "Now you have brought this issue to my notice, I will get it looked into," Sibal said.
Repeated attempts to seek Dar's comments did not fructify.