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Construction of toilets under SSA stalled
Municipal committee Sunderbani says pit does not meet municipal guidelines
Pawan Kumar
SUNDERBANI, Oct 7: Construction of a toilet under Sarva Shiksha Abhiyaan (SSA) in the premises of Government Girls Higher Secondary School Sunder Bani in Rajouri district has been stalled following the objections raised by local Municipal Committee which says that the size of pit does not comply with the municipal norms.

The school, with the student strength of over 700, has only one toilet block as a result of which students, teaching as well as non teaching staff of the school face problems during the school hours.

The toilet construction work was stopped after some people from vicinity raised objections vis-à-vis the size of pit. The executing officer of the municipality Abdul Qadir Malik visited the spot on September 23 and reportedly asked the school authorities to stop the construction work.

However, the officer did not cite reasons in writing for stalling the work.

“Following objection raised by some people over the construction work we wrote to Municipal Committee. The executing officer did not raise any objection but some people forcibly stopped the construction process,” said in-charge Principal of the school, Deep Kumar, adding, “The construction of the toilet was underway as per the norms and funds allocated by the department under SSA.”

Executing Officer of Municipal Committee Sunderbani, Abdul Qadir Malik said, “I have written to higher authorities including Deputy Commissioner regarding the issue. As per the municipal norms, a pit measuring at least 8X8 feet is allowed within the municipal limits.”

Interestingly, a toilet with pit measuring 5x5 feet was constructed within municipal limits last month in Government Primary School Kathanu.

Chief Education Officer, Rajouri, MLA Sharma told the `Kashmir Times’ over telephone, “The matter should be resolved by the village education committee and the locals amicably.”

“The toilet is being constructed under a centrally sponsored scheme and therefore it automatically complies with the municipal and other norms. However, the site of the proposed toilet can be changed if it’s required,” he added.

According to official sources, at least 34 percent schools in Jammu and Kashmir are without toilet facility.

Under the centrally sponsored flagship programme SSA, the government has provision for the allotment of an amount of Rs 44,000 and Rs 1.10 lakhs for the construction of toilets in the school depending on the strength of students.
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News Updated at : Sunday, October 7, 2012
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