Safety ignored: Plan to install CCTVs in Delhi civic schools moves in a slow lane
The plan to install surveillance cameras in primary schools was part of the three municipal corporations’ budgets for the two last consecutive years. But none could cover even one-fourth of schools so far.delhi Updated: Sep 12, 2017 23:55 IST
The three civic agencies have swung into action after the Delhi government’s directions to complete police verification of non-teaching staff at schools within three weeks.
But going by their past performances, the chances of installing CCTV cameras in school premises for the safety of children look bleak.
The directives were issued by the Delhi government on Monday, amid rising concerns over safety of kids in schools after an eight-year-old student was murdered in Gurgaon’s Ryan International and the alleged rape of a five-year-old girl at her school in Gandhi Nagar.
The plan to install surveillance cameras in primary schools was part of the three municipal corporations’ budgets for the two last consecutive years. But none could cover even one-fourth of schools so far.
The three municipal corporations have around 1,200 school buildings and only 77 have provisions for CCTV cameras.
Out of them, the North Delhi Municipal Corporation failed to install cameras even in a single school while EDMC could start work a few months back in 15 schools after Rs 2 crore was allocated by Member of Parliament and Delhi BJP president Manoj Tiwari.
On the other hand, the South Delhi Municipal Corporation, which is doing financially well compared to its counterparts, has covered only 62 school buildings so far. Officials, though, claim that tenders would be allocated soon for installing cameras in all schools.
Preeti Agarwal, mayor, North DMC said budget is the main constraint for the delay in implementing the proposal. “We are running under financial deficit even right now but efforts would be made to install cameras in some schools, to begin with,” she said.
Agarwal accepted that safety of students is important for the civic agency and that’s why orders have been issued to start verification of non-teaching staff.
“Though there is no deadline for installing CCTV cameras, we will arrange them over the period of time even if it requires arrangement of funds from other sources,” EDMC commissioner, Ranbir Singh.
Besides, the number of other non-teaching staff deployed in civic agencies is not encouraging too. Of the 1097 posts created for school attendants, 415 are unoccupied in North and East Corporations. Similarly, of the 589 posts for nursery, 116 posts for vacant for years.
Nearly 241 posts for chowkidars are lying vacant in three civic agencies, of which 200 are in South. “Though private guards are deployed at some places, we are going to hire manpower from civil defence soon,” said a south corporation official.