Itahari, September 6:

Schools in Inaruwa and other flood-affected areas of Sunsari district have remained closed for 19 days, affecting thousands of students. The closure came after school buildings were inundated following flooding in the Saptakoshi river. The shutdown has affected 15, 000 students of Haripur, Sripur, Paschim Kusaha and Laukahi, the displaced said.

According to Sunsari District Education Officer Deepak Kafle, over 16,000 students of schools, college and madrasa in Inaruwa and adjoining areas have not been able to give continuity to studies.

“Academic activities cannot resume till flood victims, who have been taking shelter in school and college buildings, are shifted elsewhere,” Kafle said. To enable schools and colleges to resume academic activities, the government should make alternative arrangements for the flood victims first, he said.

“The Saptakoshi flood has inundated 17 community school buildings, six madrasas, 13 buildings of private and boarding schools and 24 child development centres in Paschim Kusaha, Haripur, Sripur and Laukahi VDCs in Sunsari district,” Kafle said.

“The flooded Saptakoshi has swept away dresses, textbooks and teaching materials. Educational institutes will not be able to resume classes unless they get textbooks and dresses.”

Saying that the Ministry of Education has been urged to supply textbooks and other teaching materials, Kafle said discussions were underway with donor agencies to provide school uniforms to the students.

“Though teaching materials and dresses can be managed, it will be difficult to run classes in flood-affected areas,” Jagadish Oli, a district-based educationist said.

As the flooding has damaged chairs, benches and other physical infrastructure of Inaruwa-based schools and colleges, it will be difficult to resume classes.

“Seventy-five per cent of furniture belonging to Inaruwa-based schools, colleges and madrasas has been damaged,” DEO Kafle said.

Lakhs of rupees will be needed for the resumption of academic activities in educational institutes of the district, Sunsari CDO Durga Bhandari said. “As more than 3,000 furniture items of schools, colleges and madrasas in Inaruwa have been damaged. These items should be repaired to run the educational institutes,” said Satya Narayan Meheta, headmaster of the Bal Mandir School, said.

Dysentery death

RAJBIRAJ: A flood victim, Kasira Khatun, 26, of Haripur-8 in Sunsari died of dysentery in Saptari district on Saturday, flood victims said. Khatun, who had been taking shelter in a temporary camp established west of the Koshi Barrage, died on the way to a hospital, the victims said, adding that six flood victims sheltering in relief camps in Saptari have died of different diseases so far. — HNS