Education Amid Lockdown | Students in Drass travel long distances to attend online classes

While the government has been trying online options for education, remote areas like Drass have failed to benefit due to poor connectivity in the region.

Students from Shimsha in Drass sub division of Kargil district walk several kilometres to attend online classes due to the unavailability of internet connectivity in their village.

According to students, they have to trek a few kilometres in certain areas to get a proper signal so that they can attend classes or submit their assignments online.

“We are under lockdown due to COVID-19 pandemic. There is no mobile phone tower in our area where we can get internet access to attend online classes. So, we are left with no option but to travel 4 km here to get internet access,” a student said.

A female student said that many a times they miss the online classes due to routine chores at home.

The students urged the administration to install mobile phone towers in the far off areas for the convenience of the people, particularly the student community.

“In Shimsha area of Drass in Kargil district, students have to trek around 4 to 5 km from their homes to a hilltop area where they get mobile connectivity from the neighbouring areas,” noted social activist Sajad Hussain Kargili told Greater Kashmir over phone from Kargil.

He also shared a video with the district administration illustrating the problems being faced by the students due to the lack of mobile network in Shimsha village, forcing students to walk about 4 kilometres where they can get a signal for online classes.

Deputy commissioner Kargil Santosh Sukhadeve told Greater Kashmir that he had sought a report about the problem faced by the students.

“I am soon getting a comprehensive report. We are also organising community classes at the village level. This will help in areas where there is no or poor internet connectivity,” he said.

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