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HindustanTimes Sun,21 Sep 2014

Punjab govt schools suffer from unscheduled outages

Gurpreet Singh Chhina, Hindustan Times  Fatehgarh Sahib, July 15, 2014
First Published: 01:48 IST(15/7/2014) | Last Updated: 07:31 IST(15/7/2014)

With insufficient funds to even buy diesel for generators installed in few government schools, teachers and students are badly affected by the unscheduled power cuts.

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With no alternative arrangement in place, handmade paper fans were a common sight in the classrooms of the district.

A teacher from a government elementary school in Sirhind said the situation worsened everyday as neither the state government nor the local administration took notice of how students were being affected by the long power cuts.

Saying that a couple of students fainted everyday in class because of the hot weather, she added
that timings of 8am to 2pm should be reduced till the monsoon arrived.

“In providing some relief to the students, we cannot even take classes outside as there are no trees or lakes around. So they are made to sit inside humid classrooms,” she said.

Surinder Kaur, mother of a Class-7 student of a government school, also voiced similar sentiments and said the government should declare holidays or change timings until the situation improves.

District education officer Parveen Kumar said that they had decided to write to the Punjab government about the plight of students and added there was no separate fund allocation to buy diesel for generators.

However, changing school timings was up to the discretion of the education department, he said.
Similarly, deputy commissioner Arun Sekhri said it was would be the decision of the education department to announce holidays or change in timings in view of the power cuts.

Sekhri added the cuts were imposed by the Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) head office and the local administration had no role to play in it.

There are a total of 460 government primary schools, 36 government senior secondary schools, 45 government high schools and 137 government middle schools in the district which are all suffering the same fate.

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