Old ZP school reopened for 2019-20 academic year

State to start sending teachers back from Friday; residents of four villages stop protest

The villagers of Ganeshpuri, Targhar, Ulwe and Kombadbhuje, affected by the Navi Mumbai International Airport (NMIA) project heaved a sigh of relief on Thursday after their demand of having teachers back at the old Zilla Parishad (ZP) School, was agreed upon.

The villagers had been fighting since November after the State government decided to shift the teachers to the new school constructed by CIDCO at Sector 24, Ulwe, asking the locals to send their children there.

The villagers who said this was a pressure tactic to make them leave the village for the NMIA, refused to send their children there in the middle of the academic year. Even after several meetings and requests, when their demands were not met, the villagers and their children protested outside the Block Development Office (BDO) in Panvel.

Last week the villagers submitted a letter to the BDO mentioning there would be a protest on Thursday if the request was not met. “While we were on protest, there was a function happening at Uran where Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis was also present. He got the news of the protest from the ZP CEO Abhay Yawalkar and MLA from Alibaug Jayant Patil, who were also at the function. The CM asked the ZP to start sending the teachers to the old school from Friday, which was conveyed to us by the BDO. We stopped our protest then. We are yet to receive the order in writing but a teacher from the ZP also texted me saying they will be there in the old school from Friday at the usual time,” Prashant Bhoir, president of the four villages’ committee said.

Mr. Yawalkar said,“The earlier decision of shifting the teachers was made by the State government and so is the new decision. The teachers will use the old schools for this academic year. From next year, the villages will have no people anyway.”

The children, after missing school for over a year, were being taught in the old school by seven women from the village. “The kids were overjoyed to know that their teachers will be back in their old school. Our protest was finally successful. If not for the sake of children, we wouldn’t have taken so much effort,” Kirti Madhavi, an engineer from the village, who was temporarily teaching, said.

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Printable version | May 26, 2020 12:35:43 AM |

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