300 Children on Hunger Strike for Demanding a High School, Faint After 18 Hours
In an extreme protest, 13 children out of some 300, who were forced to sit on a fast by their parents, fell unconscious at a Nadia district village in West Bengal, about 130km from Calcutta on the morning of 30th July’08.
The fasting protest in front of Golaidori-Battala primary school was organized by parents to demand a high school in the area. The nearest high school is now 8km away.
Reacting on the incident, a furious Nakasipara Block Development Officer (BDO) Subol Mahajan Said, “This the cruelest agitation I have ever seen. Some 300 children were not allowed to eat for a continuous 18 hours and most of them have cried for food last night. The guardians will have to pay the price for it.”
After the children fell ill, the district administration filed FIRs against the parents charging them with cruelty. The hunger strike was called off thereafter.
The BDO and the Block Medical Officer Vivek Das got the 13 boys admitted to Bethuadahari Rural Hospital.
Most children of the village cannot study beyond Class IV because of the distance of the high school. About 400 children of the Muslim-dominated Galaidori village had to drop out of the school in past two years after class IV as the poor villagers of could not afford even bicycles.
The hunger strike however produced immediate result, when in Calcutta the secondary school education minister Partho Dey promised a school to the villagers. He said, “The villagers will have to submit an application for the school to the BDO. We will build a Junior High School (up to Class VIII)".
Tags: Fast By Children , Demand For School , Children Fell Ill , School
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