AFTER RECEIVING complaints that Gyanganga school in Wankaner town of Morbi district had resumed classroom teaching for its students, a team of the Morbi district education officer (DEO) raided the private school on Wednesday and ordered the suspension of the classes. The DEO also issued a notice to the private school, asking why action should not be taken against the latter.
“On the basis of a complaint filed on Monday, we conducted an inspection of Gyanganga school on Wednesday and found that classroom teaching for 95 students of class 10 and 31 students of class 12 was going on. We ordered the immediate suspension of the classroom teaching and recorded statements of 71 students before one Jitu Somani, a local leader who had shooed students and teachers away telling them no one should give any statement to our teams,” Morbi DEO BM Solanki said.
The DEO said that the school had been calling class 10 students for five classes and class 12 students for one class. “In their statements, 17 students of class 12 said that they had been attending classroom teaching sessions in the school for the past two weeks. Fifty-eight students of class 10 stated that they had been attending the school for the past nine days. However, when we sought a clarification from Yogendrasinh Jhala, the administrator of the school, he claimed that they were merely conducting examinations in the school,” Solanki further said.
Schools in the state have been shut since late March due to the Covid-19 outbreak and the government has not allowed them to reopen till date due. “We have served a notice on the school asking to show reasons why action should not be initiated against it for violating Covid-19 related restrictions and defying orders of the state education department with respect to keeping schools shut,” the DEO added.
Somani is a local BJP leader who had unsuccessfully contested the Assembly election from Wankaner seat in 2017. He and Jhala could not be reached for comment. “While Somani is reportedly not directly associated with the school, he gives backing to the school administrator,” Solanki said, adding the government has powers to annul recognition of the school if found guilty of violating government orders.
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