School students expressed concern over the violence and inhuman killings in the country and called for peace, at a poem recitation competition held here on Thursday.

“The need for peace observed by young students should be seen as their yearning for return of normalcy,” said Mod Nath Prashrid, former minister of education and a poet at the function. He added that the primary task facing the nation is to ensure that people live in harmony.

The competition was organised as a part of the celebrations of the 37th Students’ Day to mark the establishment of All Nepal National Free Student Union (ANNFSU). “We are organising the event to provide an outlet to students in expressing their views” said Bhairab Rawal, central committee member of ANNFSU.

Forty-seven public and private schools of the valley participated in the poem recitation competition while, 25 of them recited self-written poems in the final round.

Poet Manjul, congratulating students for their thought-evoking poems, said: “Poems should neither preach nor should they criticise others. Instead they should be the expression of one’s heart.”

Roshan Poudel of Lotus School, who bagged the first prize, walked away with Rs 2000 along with a shield. “The competition has helped build my confidence besides giving me an opportunity to represent my school,” said Binod Dhakal, who won a consolation prize.