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Subadh Kumar Nayak

Bhubaneswar: The School & Mass Education Department of Odisha government on Friday directed all district collectors to submit report on constitution of squads to check weight of bags of students in schools across the State.

PK Mishra, Joint Secretary, School & Mass Education Department, in his letter to all the district collectors said that the department had issued repeated instructions earlier to constitute squads at district level under the order of the District Collector with the DEOs/DPCs as chairman and BEOs/DCPOs/Police officers/any other officers/NGOs, as the District Collector may decide, as members of the squad to visit schools including all private schools to verify their compliance on the guidelines for reduction of weight of school bags and instruction of Ministry of Human Resource Development’s (MHRD).

“All complaints on violation of any of the provisions must be verified by the squad and report needed to be submitted to the respective Directors and Department as well. But till date no action-taken report has been received regarding constitution of squad in your district, its members and action taken after constitution of squads,” said the letter.

“You are therefore requested again to kindly furnish the required information/ reports by February 20, 2020,” it added.

Earlier in August 2019, the State government had directed collectors to constitute squads to check weight of school bags.

As per the MHRD guidelines, the maximum weight of the school bag for the students of Classes I and II should be less than 1.5 kg and the weight of the bags of students from Classes III to V should be less than 3 kg. Likewise, the school bag weight of Classes VI and VII should not be more than 4 kg, for Classes VIII and IX should be 4.5 kg and for Class X, it should not exceed 5 kg.

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