Rajbiraj, April 21
Although the government promised to deliver textbooks to students before the beginning of the new academic session, only 25 per cent of students in Saptari district have received textbooks so far.
The new academic session began almost a week ago, but students are attending their schools without textbooks.
Chairman Bhola Chaudhary of Book and Stationery Entrepreneurs Union said there was an acute shortage of textbooks as Janak Education Materials Center did not deliver textbooks as per the demand in the district.
It is said that private printing firms have already printed and delivered textbooks for primary level. Ninth graders are the hardest hit due to the textbook crunch as the curriculum has been changed from this year.
“Hundreds of students and guardians have been approaching us for textbooks every day, but in vain,” said Shiva Narayan Sah of Sajha Pustak Bhandar. He attributed the crisis to negligence of the JEMC.
The JEMC had run a temporary depot to solve the book shortage in Rajbiraj last year. But the JEMC has yet to open the depot this year. “Book sellers are compelled to visit Janakpur, Biratnagar and Kathmandu for textbooks,” added Chaudhary.
He said book sellers were offered very low commission on textbooks. “Hence, the shortage,” he said.
Saptari Chairman of Civil Networks, Sukha Ram Yadav, said the JEMC’s failure to deliver the textbooks on time had created the problem. “The JEMC is to blame for textbook shortage in the district,” he said.
Meanwhile, District Education Officer Laxmi Prasad Bhattarai said his office was taking initiatives to solve the textbook crisis in the district.
A version of this article appears in print on April 22, 2016 of The Himalayan Times.