HYDERABAD: Two instances of children being made to perform the task of school staff has come to the fore from Rangareddy district. In one case from Kendriya Vidyalaya (KV), Shivarampally, photographs have emerged showcasing around seven to eight adolescent boys being made to clean their toilets.
They can be seen holding brooms, buckets, mugs and scrubbing the floors clean.
In another case, from a government school at Hydershakote near Attapur, videos have emerged showing adolescent girl students sweeping their classrooms with brooms, moving furniture and discarding waste. The girls in the video can be heard stating that they are helping cleaning staff with the chores.
“They were forced to clean the toilet in the name of Swachh Bharat. However, only some of them were made to do it. Though they conveyed they were uncomfortable to do so, they were forced,” said a student’s relative on condition of anonymity about the issue from KV.
It is learnt that the incident in KV occurred on September 3. The issue has been criticised as not only were the children being made to perform cleaning tasks, but they were also segregated based on gender as in case of the government school, where allegedly the boys were made to perform the duty of ‘guards’ and the girls the duty of ‘sweeping indoors’.
“We have written to the Joint Labour Commissioner to book the principal of KV Shivarampally under the provisions of the Child Labour Act, as the principal used the children to perform hazardous occupations. We have also lodged a complaint with Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan demanding the removal of principal,” said Achyuta Rao of Balala Hakkula Sangham.
Furthermore, a complaint was lodged with the District Education Officer demanding action against the teachers.
“It is a school with 400 students and four teachers. Ironically, the Mandal Education Officer is the temporary Headmaster there and this act happened under his nose,” added Achyuta Rao. Officials from District Education were unavailable for comment.