GUWAHATI: It was out of sheer patriotism that the Naskara Lower Primary School in Assam’s Dhubri district celebrated the Independence Day despite the institute remaining under flood waters, a teacher of the school said Friday.
The school had grabbed the attention of the country after photographs of I-Day celebrations at the institute, where two teachers and as many Class III students were seen saluting the national flag in waist-deep waters - neck-deep for the two minors - had gone viral on social media.
There is a perception that the Naskara LP School celebrated the occasion braving the odds as it was afraid of being punished by the authorities.
“Independence Day and Republic Day are two special occasions for all of us in this remote village. It’s true that we received an order from the office of the cluster resource centre coordinator to celebrate the occasion in a befitting manner but it will be wrong to presume that we celebrated it out of fear,” said Mizanur Rahman, assistant teacher, who had posted the photographs on Facebook.
The cluster resource centre or CRC in Naskara offers academic support to 11 lower primary and two ME schools. About a week ahead of I-Day, the CRCs issue guidelines to the schools under their jurisdiction about activities they have to organise during the celebrations and then submit a report along with photographs to Sarva Siksha Abhiyan authorities.
Asked if action is taken against schools that do not celebrate the I-Day for any reason, say natural calamity, the state’s SSA mission director, Aruna Rajoria, replied in the negative. “Only general guidelines are issued for a celebration of national days every year,” she said.
Rahman said he had never heard of a school being punished for not celebrating the occasion. He, however, hastened to add: “There will be criticism from teachers of other schools. A few years ago, a school in our place had hoisted the Tricolour very early in the morning and it faced flak from other schools."
Meanwhile, the Naskara LP School remained closed as it was still under flood waters.