Re-opening of Colleges, Universities: Staff present, Students absent

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Faculty members say communication gag, prevailing fear major reason for zero student attendance at Colleges, Varsities

Srinagar, Oct 09 (KNO): The government’s decision to re-open Colleges and Universities across Kashmir on Wednesday proved to be yet another failed attempt as only staff members could be spotted in the higher educational institutions with students decided to stay home.

 As per the announcement made by Divisional Commissioner Kashmir Baseer Ahmed Khan last week, all the colleges and Universities were supposed to re-open and work as per normal from October 09. The Kashmir News Observer (KNO) team that visited series of Colleges that include Amar Singh College, Islamia College, Shri Pratap College, Government Degree College Bemina, Gandhi College, Womens College MA Road and Womens College NawaKadal, only staff members were present while as class rooms presented a deserted look as students decided to stay away from classes.

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“We have been coming since past many days but today no student turned up as there is fear among the children and above all communication gag has been the major hurdle as far as student attendance is concerned,” said a senior faculty member at Amar Singh College Gogjibagh. He said that education has been the worst hit sector post August 5, when Centre revoked J&K’s special status and bifurcated the State into two Union Territories (UTs).

According to wire service—Kashmir News Observer (KNO), a few colleges and Universities witnessed thick presence of security forces personnel to deal with any possible law and order situation.

“Outside Kashmir’s main seat of learning, Kashmir University, security forces were deployed outside in length,” an eye-witness said. A few students who had assembled outside Kashmir University said that the ongoing uncertainty is not favourable for them to attend classes. “We have no means of communication and there is no internet facility available even at the University. So no fun attending classes,” a group of students said.

Government had earlier announced re-opening of primary and higher secondary schools, however, student attendance remained almost zero in all the institutions as parents preferred to keep their wards at home.

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