Children of labourers working at the President’s Estate will now get a resting place with a creche being inaugurated on Saturday to provide them education, food and medical facilities.

‘Sopan’ - first step to success - has been opened in the 340-acres Estate and has a capacity to accommodate about 25 children in the age group of 3-6 years.

Officials say the idea was first mooted by President Pratibha Patil, who was moved by the plight of children of labourers sitting under the hot sun and playing with pebbles.

“The main idea behind it is to give all possible help to such children. We have appointed trained teachers and caretakers to provide education and food during their stay at the centre besides medical staff, who will regularly check them up,” Secretary to the President, Christy Fernandez told PTI. The creche was inaugurated by his wife Chachima Christy.

Officials say on an average 100 workers look after different maintenance and construction work at President’s Estate at any given time.

“We have appointed two each caretakers and attendants for children who are spouses of employees of Rashtrapati Bhavan. It is our effort to provide them elementary education, health care and recreational facilities,” said Rasika Chaubey, in-charge of the centre and Internal Financial Advisor, President’s Secretariat.

The centre has a wide range of educational toys and swings for children’s recreation.

“I am relaxed that my children will now get good care,” said Malti, a labourer and mother of three, who has come here from Jhansi.

According to Rashtrapati Bhavan officials, contractors undertaking construction work inside the Estate will identify children and bring them to the creche. “Our aim is to become a model employer,” Ms. Chaubey said.

Keywords: Social service

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