Jammu and Kashmir: Five districts, 26 schools, most closed — zero attendance

Adil Akhzer
An empty school in Srinagar. (Express Photo by Shuaib Masoodi)

Two days after primary schools reopened to empty classrooms in the Valley after days of being closed amid a communication lockdown in Jammu and Kashmir, the administration reopened middle schools on Wednesday, and the result was largely similar. While most institutions The Indian Express checked across five Kashmir districts remained closed, most teachers and nearly all students stayed away in the few that opened their gates.

The administration said attendance of students and teachers has improved in over the last two days.

The Indian Express went to 26 primary and middle schools both government and private institutions in Srinagar, Budgam, Baramulla, Bandipore and Ganderbal districts and found that no student attended classes. While some teachers reported for duty at a few schools, most of them stayed away.

In the evening media briefing, Director (Information) Syed Sehrish Asgar, accompanied by Director (Education) Mohammad Younis Malik and DIG (Central Kashmir) V K Birdi, said, Student attendance was 2 to 3 per cent in south Kashmir and 50 per cent in some areas of north Kashmir.

An empty classroom in Srinagar. (Express Photo: Shuaib Masoodi)

A few among the handful of teachers who reported for duty maintained that the administration is putting their life in danger by opening schools amid tension in the region.

At New Era Public School in Srinagar s Rajbagh, for instance, while the school gate was open, no student turned up. School officials said eight staff members reported for duty. At Delhi Public School, Budgam, the gate was bolted from inside, and the security guard said no teacher or student turned up.

The Indian Express found the school gate open or bolted from inside in a few instances but no student or teacher present at New Convent School, Gogji Bagh, Srinagar; J-K Public School Humhama, Srinagar; Government High School, Government Boys High School and Girls High School (all housed on same premises); Government Primary School, Reshipora, Budgam; Government Middle School, Sebdan, Budgam; Pioneer School, Pattan, Baramulla; International Islamic School, Rawalpora, Srinagar.

Other schools The Indian Express visited and found locked from outside are Prime Public School, Barzulla, Srinagar; Government Primary School, Sheikhpora, Budgam; Government Primary School, Karpora, Budgam; Kashmir Public Vidyalaya, Mirgund, Baramulla; Government Girls Middle School, Hanjiveera, Baramulla; Government Primary School Singhpora, Baramulla; Primary Middle School, Ahan, Ganderbal; Government Middle School Barsoo, Ganderbal; Girls Middle School Repora, Ganderbal; Government Middle School Lar, Ganderbal; Royal Public School, Badampora, Ganderbal; Qureshia Model High School Zaznar, Ganderbal; Boys Middle School Shadipora Payeen, Bandipore; Primary School Wagnipora, Sumbal, Bandipore, and Kindergarten School, Wagnipora, Sumbal, Bandipore.