Worried over the safety of their kids, dalit residents of a village near here have stopped sending their children to school for the last couple of days.
The residents of Pulavarpalayam, located along the Salem-Karur National Highway, claimed that education department was yet to respond to their long-pending demand to shift the Panchayat Union Primary School from Thattankuttai to Pulavarpalayam to ensure safer and easier access for their children.
Panchayat president K Karupannan said, “The children have to cross extensive farm lands to reach the school. All the 36 students are from our village and hence, the demand.”
Some parents said that on June 4, some miscreants chased their children while they were on their way to school. “Our kids said they ran to escape from the miscreants who were having a drink on the farm land,” claimed a parent, S Janaki.
Even if the children avoided the pathway, Janaki said they had to walk two km and cross the national highway, which could prove dangerous. On the other hand, all the children from Thattankuttai, a nearby village where caste Hindus were believed to be a majority, were sent to private schools. “Aversion towards dalit kids” could be the reason for this, sources said.
On Monday, a team led by elementary education officer A Arulmozhidevi, visited the village and tried to convince the parents to give up their stir, but in vain.