A woman who voluntarily teaches ragpickers’ children at Bhovapur in Ghaziabad after her office hours, recently sought help from every possible quarter and tweeted to the Union HRD ministry, the Prime Minister’s Office, Arvind Kejriwal, Manish Sisodia, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav and the UP government to help her students get admission to schools for continuing their formal education.
The Uttar Pradesh government was the only one to notice her messages and responded a few hours later.
Arpna Chandail hails from Doda in Jammu & Kashmir and presently stays in Ghaziabad. She works with a television channel and teaches children after office hours at a makeshift school in Bhovapur, Ghaziabad, near the Delhi border.
“The school is run from a house in Bhovapur and the owner and I teach nearly 40-45 children who come from deprived families, mostly engaged in ragpicking. These children have no access to formal schooling. We tried to get them admitted to a nearby government primary school but the school admit children only up to the age of 10,” Chandail said.
“Some of the children we teach were admitted to the school but others, in the age group of five to 14 years, are still in dire need of formal education. Some of the children are also engaged in ragpicking. So, I tweeted to every possible quarter for help,” she said.
On July 7 morning, Chandail tweeted, “@CMOfficeUP @yadavakhilesh Sir please hlp in schooling of rag pickers children at Bhowapur Kaushambi Need your help (sic).”
“@HRDMinistry @PMOIndia want the rag picker children to get into school, Trust me Bhowapur govt. school is not worth going. Plz do something (sic),” her tweet to HRD Ministry and PM Office said.
Chandail also tagged the Twitter handles of Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal and his minister Manish Sosodia in her tweets, stating, “@ArvindKejriwal @msisodia please take them in Gazipur school. Bhowapur govt school is not worth going. In trouble because of Delhi UP issue (sic).”
Chandail also tagged a photograph of the children who come to the non-formal school in Bhovapur every day in the evening.
The office of UP chief minister responded within 4-5 hours, “@Arpna_Chandail @yadavakhilesh we will get the department concerned to look into it. Thanks for bringing into our notice (sic).”
The tweet was followed by swift action -- a message was sent to Ghaziabad district administration to immediately send a team of officials to check on the children in Bhovapur. Later, Chandail also got a call from Ghaziabad district magistrate DM Vimal Kumar Sharma.
On June 8, Ghaziabad administration sent a team of officials to Bhovapur which undertook a survey of children taught by Chandail and also other children living in the vicinity.
“We had sent a team of officials to make a survey of the locality. Our team identified 40 children who need formal education. Now we are trying to get them admitted to government as well as private schools nearby to ensure that they get formal education,” DM Sharma said.
“Every possible effort will be put in to get the children admitted to formal schools. The admissions will be undertaken at the earliest,” Sharma said.