DHUBRI, Nov 3 - At a time when the Centre and the State often claim to have given stress on education by implementing various schemes, however, it apparently seems that the powers that be cannot even save its schools from soil erosion as around 429 elementary schools has been adversely affected by soil erosion till last month.
In reply to an RTI dated 16/10/2019 by the Office of the District Elementary Education Officer of Dhubri signed by the State Public Information Officer and reports duly signed by the district project engineer, it was revealed that the affect of soil erosion has been highest during the current year.
It was reported that the department had been maintaining records since 2012, when 271 schools were affected by such natural disaster, while in 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018, as many as 271, 80, 223, 54, 60 and 13 schools were affected by soil erosion. Although no data for the year 2013 was recorded, still around 1,130 schools were affected by severe soil erosion.
However, the report in the RTI reply signed on October 28 also revealed that as many as 228 schools since 2012 were washed away in the districts of Dhubri and South Salmara Mankachar. It says that till October 2019 as many as 24 schools were washed away, while in 2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 as many as 19, 64, 44, 34, 33 and 10 schools were completely washed away.
Meanwhile, sharing information on the measures that have been taken, the RTI reply clearly stated that, �from 2012 to 2019, every year after the floods, a list of such schools are being collected and sent to various authorities, i.e. deputy commissioners, District Disaster Management Authority, Director of Elementary Education, Assam and Mission Director, SSA (Axom Sarva Siksha Abhijan Mission), Assam, for taking necessary remedial measures and providing financial aid thereof towards reconstruction/repairing etc. It may be mentioned here that funds for flood-damaged school has not yet been received at this end. Moreover, in some schools additional funds were provided by the SSA authority only and the schools concerned were constructed/repaired accordingly�.
The above are statistics pertaining to only the state elementary schools. There are hundreds of private and unprovincialised schools, besides a few high schools which have also been affected by flood-induced soil erosion, but have gone unreported.