Thiruvananthapuram: Students, teachers, parents and the government step in to help the students.

For many students from the Vengode region, it's a 45-minute walk to their school Government Higher Secondary School in Varakulam, every day, as the school bus does not reach their remotely located region. If they are lucky enough, they manage to get one of the few buses that shuttle between the regions before school time. Putting an end to their hard times, the school received a brand new mini bus, a stylish 32-seater Swaraj Mazda model recently.

Under the joint initiative of the School Parents Teachers Association (PTA) and MLA Palode Ravi, the new bus was unveiled recently. An amount of Rs.5 lakh from the MLA fund and Rs.7.6 lakh from the PTA fund were utilised for purchasing the bus.

Bad condition

According to the Principal of the school, D. Vasanthan, “The old bus had a mileage of 3 km/litre and was in need of a lot of maintenance work. Hence, we had to restrict the bus route to Nedumangad-Karipoor region, sometimes halting the bus for the night at the Government School for Girls, Nedumangad, due to its poor condition and to save fuel.”

“Four teachers of the school had played a special role by coming forward to take loans amounting to Rs. 4 lakh for this initiative. Apart from this, all teachers had contributed money as ‘interest-free loans' which helped us to collect the remaining amount of money,” said P.Vijayakumar, PTA president.

“All teachers welcomed this decision and we opted for the mini bus so that it can commute in such areas. The students also came forward by making their own contributions,” said Jose B. Sujeev, one of the teachers who has taken the loan.