JAGATSINGHPUR: Frequent electrocution mishaps have failed to open the eyes of the administration to the threat posed by low-lying overhead electricity cables to the public including school students of the district.
In Biridi block, 11 KV wires pass over two schools jeopardising the safety of hundreds of students. Villagers of Purana alleged that a 100-kilowatt transformer has been installed on the premises of the local high school but no safety measures have been put in place for the students who can be often seen playing near it.
“An 11 KV wire also passes over the school. Students feel unsafe to attend school as sparks often fly from the transformer during overload and fuse trip,” they claimed. Around 350 students are enrolled in Purana High School.
Similarly, students of Ankhia Sishu Vidya Mandir in Biridi are also living in panic as an 11 KV wire passes near then school boundary.
Though guardians and villagers have repeatedly urged the officials of the Energy department and the district administration to shift the electricity cables away from the school boundary, all their pleas have fallen on deaf ears.
The school has around 260 students.
Earlier, former MLA Rabindra Bhoi had sought the intervention of the district administration for shifting the transformer and 11 kV wire away from the schools, but no steps have been taken in this regard so far.
Apart from the school students, villagers of Gadama, Mallikanch and Arana are also under threat of loosely hanging overhead cables.
The villagers, who come under Raghunathpur section of Jagatsinghpur Electrical Division, said due to shortage of electricity poles, bamboos have been used to support cables which pass overhead at a height of only five to seven feet.
Executive Engineer, CESU Biraja Kumar Padhi said the department is aware of the situation. “Steps are being taken to renovate the power infrastructure and work order has been issued to a contractor to shift the wires from near the schools,” he added.