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Schools reopen in border areas after closure due to Pak shelling

Classes were held on Friday in all the government schools in Manjakote and Doongi areas of Rajouri district.

india Updated: Aug 05, 2017 18:21 IST
Ravi Krishnan Khajuria
Ravi Krishnan Khajuria
Hindustan Times, Jammu
school,jammu and kashmir,border areas
Border migrants of Jhanghar village take shelter in government school after shelling from Pakistan side at Nowshera sector of Rajouri district.(PTI )

Jammu and Kashmir government started reopening schools along the LoC which were closed down following heavy shelling by Pakistani forces in the past few months, even as bordering areas continue to remain tense.

Classes were held on Friday in all the government schools in Manjakote and Doongi areas of Rajouri district, where more than 4,000 villagers continue to live in six relief camps set up in Nowshera town.

All other schools in Dandesar and Nowshera zones, barring 14 in the direct firing range of Pakistani army, also resumed classes on Saturday, district authorities said.

Rajouri deputy commissioner Shahid Iqbal Choudhary told HT over phone that these 14 schools fall within Pakistan’s direct firing range along the disturbed border in Jhangar, Sher Makri, Namb, Kadali and Kalal areas.

The government was forced to shut the schools for an indefinite period after Pakistani army on July 18 targeted schools in the Nowshera sector.

A harried administration had pressed into service bullet proof (Casper) vehicles, also called bunkers in common parlance, and rescued over 250 small children in a day-long exercise.

To cope with intermittent firing by the Pakistani army, the state government submitted a proposal to the Centre for building 621 community bunkers at a cost of Rs 6 lakh each and 8,197 individual bunkers at a cost of Rs 2.4 lakh each in the border district.

“In the meantime, we have started a project at district level for construction of 100 bunkers under MGNREGA. A total of 70 locations have been finalised and construction works have started there since July 20. We intend to complete all the 100 bunkers by December this year,” said Choudhary.

Individual bunkers shall be constructed in houses itself with a capacity to shelter 8 to 10 people. Community bunkers will be constructed close to the villages where 40 to 45 people can take refuge.

Villagers now avoid switching on their lights at night fearing Pakistani shelling.

First Published: Aug 05, 2017 18:21 IST