Education is our top priority, 2 Crores allotted for winter tuitions: CEC Feroz Khan Says vaccination of children being fast-tracked, winter tuitions to be allowed in second week of January
KARGIL, JANUARY 06, 2022: Chairman and Chief Executive Councilor, LAHDC, Kargil Feroz Ahmed Khan, who is currently in Jammu, today said that education has been top priority of LAHDC Kargil during the Covid-19 pandemic and Rs 2 Crores has been allotted for winter tuitions for Kargil.
The CEC is currently in Jammu to inspect the works of Kargil Girls Hostel, construction of Library block at Kargil Boys Hostel Channi and resolution of land issue regarding Kargil Bhawan Jammu with Jammu Development Authority.
He said that the Council is constantly monitoring the situation of Covid-19 in the district and has fast-tracked the vaccination drive for students of 15-18 years of age.
Reacting to the apprehension among the civil society in Kargil regarding closure of winter tuitions, CEC Khan said that the Health Department has been instructed to complete the vaccination of all eligible students at the earliest.
He said that winter tuitions will be allowed in the district by the second week of January, with proper adherence to SOPs issued by the Union Health Ministry.
The CEC asserted that LAHDC Kargil has, for the first time, earmarked an amount of Rs 2 Crores for establishing 150 Winter Tuition Centers at village-level to ensure that education reaches the last standing student in remote villages of Kargil district. However, the rising Covid-19 cases in the district, has affected this ambitious programme of the Council.
The CEC said that when compared to all neighboring districts, schools have been kept open for the maximum time in Kargil. He said it was only in December 2021 when a number of students of schools tested positive for Covid-19 and schools were closed again.
CEC Khan, who also holds the portfolio of Executive Councilor (Education), LAHDC Kargil said that a number of initiatives have been taken successfully for the continuation of education during the pandemic. These initiatives included community classes in open air, online classes, radio classes etc. The Council also encouraged NGOs to conduct schemes like the Khangrtsa Yontan in which doorstep education was provided to the students.
Responding to a question on his recent visit to Pune, he said that the Pune visit was also very fruitful from the point of view of educational collaborations. During the Kargil Mahotsav, he said, the Vice-Chancellor of Savitribai Phule Pune University was requested for collaborations with the University of Ladakh for Kargil specific issues especially in geology.
He further informed that the team led by him also interacted with students hailing from Kargil and studying in Pune. He said that over 40 students from Kargil are currently pursuing education under the aegis of Sarhad Foundation Pune.
During an event at the residence of the Mayor of Pune, mentors teaching students of Jawadiah Project CARE Kargil were also felicitated. Discussions were also held for extending such online initiatives.
When asked regarding the closure of winter tuitions in Kargil, CEC Khan said that the decision was taken based upon a report from CMO Kargil wherein it was reported that there has been a spike in Covid-19 cases in the district.
He assured that the Council views the issue seriously and is working for the dual purpose of keeping Covid-19 at bay and to ensure continuity of education of the children.
About issues being faced by students outside Kargil, especially in Jammu, the CEC said that the Council has come up with a Girls Hostel at Jammu having a seating capacity of 200 girl students at a cost of Rs 16.53 crores in two phases.
He said that all efforts are being made to make the hostel functional from the upcoming academic session. Furthermore, on the demand of the students residing in the Kargil Boys Hostel Channi, the CEC said that the establishment of a library at the hostel is already in its final stage. He will be visiting the hostel to inspect the ongoing work in the coming days.
CEC Khan also talked about the construction of Kargil Bhawan at Jammu and the land issue concerning it. He said that talks have been going on for quite some time now and a high-level meeting has been scheduled with the Jammu Development Authority on January 07.
Responding to allegations where it was alleged that CEC Khan was visiting schools in Delhi and at the same time educational institutions are shut in Kargil, he said that the visit to Delhi schools were made on December 20, 2021 and that even the Delhi Govt have closed the schools in addition to the imposition of strict restrictions like weekend curfew to keep Covid-19 at bay.
With the beginning of the inoculation of students in the age group 15-18, the CEC expressed hope that the situation in Kargil will be contained in time and asked all stakeholders to cooperate with authorities.
On a question regarding the heavy snowfall in the region, he said that he has directed the acting CEC and the rest of the members of the Executive Council to monitor the situation.
“They have held meetings to ensure proper supply of essential services, connectivity and clearance of all internal roads,” he said.
The CEC informed that in view of heavy snowfall, slippery conditions, and risk of avalanches at Zojila pass, he has written to the LG Ladakh to start the AN-32 Air Service and Pawan Hans Helicopter Service at the earliest.
He also said that the Council is constantly taking up the issue of commencement of civilian air service from Kargil Airport at all levels and is hopeful for its early commencement.
The CEC appreciated the work of Kargil Police Department, Traffic Police, Mechanical Division Kargil, BRO authorities, officers and officials of the Sub Divisional Administration and District Administration for keeping the Zojila Pass open for the maximum duration this winter.