Hyderabad, Nov 10 : BJP National Vice-President Bandaru Dattatreyya on Sunday demanded that the State Government take immediate steps to provide proper toilet facility in government schools.
In his 76th Open Letter to Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy, Dattatreyya said that Andhra Pradesh, which was considered to be the best State, in now on par with Bihar in the matter of providing water and sanitation to school. Of 76,000 government schools in the State, almost 47,000 do not have toilets or drinking water.
“As per the website of the State Government-run project Sarva Siksha Abhiya (SSA), 53,801 primary, upper primary and higher secondary schools have no toilet facility for girls. As many as 35,236 schools do not have toilet facilities for anybody. Drinking water facility is also not available in majority of schools,” the BJP leader said.
The Supreme Court directed the states to provide water and sanitation facility in all schools by the end of November 2011, directing all the governments to take immediate steps regarding this and file their compliance report before the deadline fixed by it. Andhra Pradesh is far from compliance with the Supreme Court directive, Dattatreyya said.
“The State Government identifies any structure as toilet. But in reality, they are not usable because of lack of maintenance or lack of water. Students shudder to enter these places, but they no option,” he said. According to a Unicef-backed survey conducted by NGO Pratham in 2010-11, the situation is even more dismal in Andhra Pradesh. About 42.6 per cent of the government schools only have toilets, moreover most of them are not usable.
Dattatreyya alleged that the State Government was demonstrating complete lack of sensitivity towards the problems of the students from the poorer sections. In fact, in the building plans of many schools, no provision is made for toilets. “It is a matter of laughing stock, where your government is claiming that the welfare of the girl child is being taken care of by announcing schemes such as Bangaru Thalli for the overall development, which is your pet scheme. Is it possible for any individual without education to enhance his/herself. There are numerous girls dropping out of schools due to non-availability of toilets and water,” he said.
The BJP leader said that Rs 5,000 being given per annum for each government school for a worker for sanitation and cleaning was insufficient. For a month, a worker gets Rs 417 for which nobody is willing to work. Due to insufficient funds, the headmaster of the schools are refunding the amount sanctioned by the government, he said.
Dattatreyya demanded that the Chief Minister stop bickering about unnecessary futile political exercises such as opposing the bifurcation of State. “It is the only political agenda and livelihood for you not bothering about the administration and leaving it to its own fate without realising that this exercise will seal your fate,” he said. INN