Sevashram students flee from hostel

Rayagada: Alleging that they had been neglected by the authorities, 165 inmates of a government run "Sevasram" school in Maoist-affected and tribal-dominated Rayagada district have left their hostel. "All the 165 boy students of the Sevasram at Dangasurada under Chandrapur police station have left their hostel on Sunday evening. We are inquiring into the matter", district welfare officer Damodar Meher said today.

Out of total 326 students, from class I to class X, in the school there were 205 boys and 121 girls. Of them, 165 boys and 100 girls were putting up in the school hostel. With problems galore, the boarders alleged they had been writing to the authorities to solve their problems but they had fallen on deaf ears. Apparently, peeved over the neglect, the students put up posters on the school walls and nearby places before leaving the hostel en masse.

Their problems included lack of sanitation and drinking water facility in the hostel leading to health hazards, inadequate teaching staff, non-payment of pocket money, incomplete hostel building for girl students and non- cooperation and misbehaviour from the staff. The students had drawn the attention of the district collector, sub-collector and block development officer besides the DWO for solving their problems, Meher said.

The additional district welfare officer (ADWO) and local welfare extension officer (WEO) had gone to the spot to inquire into the matter, Meher said adding the students were believed to have gone to their respective villages.