Administration acts after probe reveals several govt schools in Up’s Deoria remain closed on Friday instead of Sunday

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At least four government primary schools in Uttar Pradeshs Deoria district remained closed on Friday instead of Sunday, an inquiry carried out by education department officials has revealed. The probe was initiated yesterday after it was found that another government primary school was named Islamia primary school and it remained closed on Fridays, officials said. The administration acted and directed the school in Navalpur to remain open on Fridays and closed on Sundays and also removed the sign declaring it to be Islamia primary school, they added. A probe was then initiated to check whether there were more such instances, the officials said adding the inquiry by education department officials revealed that four more schools were running on the same pattern. Basic Shiksha Adhikari(BSA), Deoria, Santosh Dev Pandey today inspected these schools and directed them to follow the norms. The correct names were also painted outside these schools, officials said. No action was taken against any principal but warnings were given, they said. After the case of primary school in Navalpur, I ordered probe against all the schools and it was found four more schools were running on the same pattern. On Monday I inspected all these schools. Correct name has been written at the school buildings and directions given to run them as per rules, Pandey said. They have been asked to observe holiday on Sunday and maintain documents in Hindi, he added. Warning has been given to the principals and if anyone flouts the rules, strict action will be taken. The schools are very old and the practice of closing the school on Friday is continuing since 1904. The principals were just following the tradition, Pandey said. Three schools in Rampurkarkhana block were observing a weekly holiday on Friday as was a primary school at Deshi block, he said. The three schools in Rampurkarkhana block were: one in Swami Patti area, another in Karmaha and the third in Pokharbhinda Ishwari Prasad area, while the school in Deshi block is in Haraiya area, the official said. In Pokharbhinda Ishwari Prasad School, seven students were registered and a principal along with an assistant teacher is posted. In Swami Patti primary school, 70 children are registered and a principal and an assistant teacher are posted, according to the official. Karmaha primary school in Rampurkarkhana block had even bagged the award for being an ideal primary school. In the present session, 156 students are registered and three assistant teachers and a principal are posted there, the official said. Block Education Officer of Rampur Karkhana, Vinod Kumar Tripathi, said, When I joined here in October 2017, I had asked guidelines regarding these three schools, but I didnot get any guidelines and the schools continued to run the way they were running. In Haraiya primary school, 80 children are registered and a principal and two assistant teachers are posted. Yesterday, a probe was ordered against a government primary school for remaining closed on Friday. Acting on a complaint against the principal of the school in Navalpur, District Magistrate Sujit Kumar directed Pandey to probe the matter. A report was sought from the BSA regarding the closure of the school on Fridays. It is a serious issue.Strict action will be taken against those responsible for this, Kumar had said. The complaint against principal Khurshid Ahmad was received by block education officer of Salempur block, Gyanchand Mishra who then sent a team of two officers to the school. The officials reached the school on Friday at around 9.45 am. They found the school to be closed and Islamia primary school, Navalpur was written outside the building instead of primary school, Navalpur, Mishra said. The block education officer called up Ahmad who justified the practice arguing that 95 per cent of the students were Muslims hence, the school remained closed on Fridays instead of Sundays, officials said. Ahmad claimed the practice was prevalent before he joined the school in 2008. The principals claim about the practice being in existence before he joined will be probed as well, Pandey said. There are five teachers in the school including Ahmad, officials said. About 90 students are enrolled in the primary school.