TODAY -
Discussion programme moots class on Sundays, holidays
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, November 10: Together with a large number of teachers belonging to different teachers' bodies ranging from primary level to university level, an open discussion programme was conducted at State Youth Centre, Khuman Lampak today under the aegis of the Manipuri Students' Federation (MSF).

The discussion programme organised on the topic of making education a free zone was moderated by former Principal of Manipur College L Sadananda.

Addressing the gathering, secretary of the All Manipur Higher Secondary Welfare Association L Joykumar asserted that students in Manipur are unable to pursue education smoothly and properly because of the flawed policies of the Government and the prevailing insurgency movement.

In the backdrop of the existing conflict situation, it would be unrealistic to tell the people not to call bandhs, blockades, general strikes, he noted.

When an innocent civilian is killed without giving any plausible reason, it is natural for the people to take recourse to bandhs and other forms of agitation to press the State Government take up appropriate actions if it fails to act on its own.

As such, the Government should be sensitive to people's sentiment and act promptly in order to avoid the menace of bandhs and blockades.

At the same time, the State Govt should adopt a sound education policy keeping in line with the changing time, Joykumar noted.

In his speech, president of the All Manipur Government College Part Time Lecturers' Association L Gojendra advocated that regardless of the conflict situation, there should be a proper education system in Manipur.

A widespread campaign should be launched to make all the people of Manipur understand the importance of education, he urged.

Moreover, the State Government should formulate an effective Act to include education among essential services., Gojendra asserted.

Due to myriad reasons, students in Manipur are unable to concentrate on their studies.

Teachers too cannot dedicate in their profession because of various reasons.

The impact of conflict situation on students and failure of the State Government to take up necessary measures for the teachers in time also contribute to the rot in education system, he observed.

Former general secretary of Manipur University Teachers' Association Chinglen Maisnam called upon the teachers to shoulder moral responsibility for imparting proper and quality education to students.

Stating that a large number of people in Manipur are still unable to read or write, he stressed on the need for a collective effort to understand the vital importance of education in modern world .

Notwithstanding the Government prohibition against imposing bandhs, general strikes, blockades etc, there is no let-up in such agitation, observed Gyaneswar.

If the teachers and students are sincere enough in their profession and duty and parents genuinely concerned with the career of their children, extra classes may be conducted on Sundays and holidays to make up for the time lost due to bandhs and strikes.

Once such a system is put into practice the effect of bandhs and strikes on education can be mitigated to considerable level, Gyaneswar asserted.

MSF president Ch Rupachandra noted that as against the usual period of 180 working days in an academic year, students in Manipur are getting less than 120 days of regular classes.

Expressing serious concern over the degrading education system in Manipur, he said that so long as the State Govt does not rectify its blunders and flawed policies, bandhs and blockades will remain a feature of the Manipuri society.

Nevertheless, it is crucial for both the State Government and agitating parties to accept that education must continue amidst bandhs and blockades, Rupachandra asserted.

Bandhs may be imposed, agitation may be launched but exclude education from the purview of the agitation, the MSF president appealed to all concerned.

It is reported that a similar open discussion programme will be organised with civil societies, pressure groups and social organisations on the same topic soon.


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