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Govt. sanctions Rs.95 lakhs

By Our Staff Reporter

PUDUKOTTAI, AUG 29. The State Government has sanctioned a sum of Rs. 95 lakhs to the district to provide non-flammable structures in classrooms of government schools where thatched roofs were removed following the Kumbakonam fire tragedy.

The fund was granted after the Education Department sent a detailed proposal seeking funds to provide non-flammable structures as well as construct `pucca' classroom buildings wherever necessary.

The fund was sanctioned in two instalments — Rs. 30 lakhs in the first phase, and Rs. 65 lakhs in the second phase.

A senior official told The Hindu today that the fund would be used to provide non-flammable roofs in government high and higher secondary schools.

Following the Kumbakonam incident, a detailed survey was undertaken to ascertain the number of schools functioning under thatched roofs when it was identified that 95 classrooms in 49 government high and higher secondary schools were functioning under thatched roofs. They were removed immediately.

So, the fund would be used to provide asbestos roofing for 95 classrooms. There was also a plan to construct `pucca' classroom buildings in government schools.

With the first instalment of fund, the work of providing asbestos roofing had commenced in 13 schools, the official said adding that the Public Works Department had been entrusted with the task of carrying out the work. Efforts had been made to complete the work before November.

According to official sources here, 60 new anganwadi centres would be constructed with funds granted by the District Rural Development Agency.

Similarly, with funds provided by the DRDA, works had commenced for construction of 304 kitchen sheds. Of them, 180 kitchen sheds had been completed and the balance would be completed soon.

As for panchayat union schools, the representatives of the local body had been advised to use general funds to provide non-flammable structures in the schools, located in their respective blocks.

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