Without a boundary wall for 14 years the government-run middle school at Lurgam in south Kashmir's Tral area looks more like a yard for stray animals like cows and dogs than a place meant for young students.
No one seems bothered about the safety of more than 90children enrolled in this school.
The Government Middle School Lurgam, located on Tral-Saturaroad is frequented by cattle, dogs and unwanted people scaring and disturbingthe students as their classes go on.
At a random glance towards the school while walking on theoutside road, animals can be seen inside the institute premises making it lookmore like more cattle house than an educational institution.
The school witnesses rush throughout school hours. Duringmorning assembly, a herd of cows is grazing beside the students causing massivedisturbance to them.
Interestingly, the government has chosen this school asmodel kindergarten (NaneKadam). Three year olds are admitted here but due topresence of animals fear has gripped their parents too.
"There are 91 students enrolled in the school despite noboundary walls. We fear for the lives of our children. Without boundary wallsanimals can easily attack our children. Many female students also feel unsafeand are unwilling to go to school," said Abdul Qayoom a local resident.
Besides animals straying into the school premises, somelocals throw garbage and pile up cow dung nearby, sending a constant stink intothe school.
"We raised the issue several times that government mustfocus on development of educational infrastructure in remote areas like Lurgambut government seems hardly bothered," another concerned resident said.
Teachers also voiced concern over the failure of theauthorities to provide a boundary walls or fencing for the school. The schooladministration had sent countless reminders and requests to the educationdepartment but to no avail.
"Locals easily roam inside the classrooms creatingindiscipline. Local residents have reduced our school to a grazing place forlivestock. We have brought this matter before every ZEO but we could get mereassurances and nothing happened so far," said a teacher who wished not tobe identified.
Director School Education Kashmir, Mohammad Younis Malik,assured Greater Kashmir that works for construction of boundary walls for theschool will be undertaken soon.