Karnataka authorities cancel boat services across Kabini river, land school and college children who go to Kerala schools in trouble

The proximity to neighbouring Kerala and cultural attachment has made many parents to put their children  in Kerala Government schools 
Representational image (Picture: Express)
Representational image (Picture: Express)

Around 150 children and their parents living in the bordering districts of Karnataka and Kerala are in trouble after the government authorities cancelled the boat services in the Kabini river citing the construction of roads as a reason. The government has restricted the movement of people from these bordering districts due to COVID-19. However, the boat services were available for kids to cross the river and travel to their schools. 

Although places like D B Kuppe, Bavali, Machur, Annemala and Hosahalli fall in Heggadevana Kote taluk in Karnataka, the proximity to neighbouring Kerala and cultural attachment has made many parents put their children in Kerala government-run Primary and Higher Secondary schools in Parikallu.

These kids travelled from Karnataka to Parikallur, Pulpali, Sultan Bathery of Wayanad district to attend offline classes. Now, as Kerala has announced the reopening of schools from November 1. Hence, parents have requested the officials to resume the boat services. 

A few students pursuing undergraduate courses take buses to reach Sultan Bathery. As the fear of COVID-19 has gripped the border areas, the Karnataka government ordered the closure of the border, withdrew boat services, dug roads connecting villages and made the RT-PCR negative report mandatory to enter Karnataka. 

Fatima, a student, said, "I am missing offline classes because there is no connectivity to reach Palpalli. If this continues we may face a shortage of attendance and may lose an academic year."

Sameer, a parent, said that the ban across the border and boating facilities has stopped them from collecting uniforms, textbooks and even free ration is given to school children by the Kerala Government. "We are worried about the future of our children, We want the government to relax norms and allow children to cross rivers to attend the classes.We have appealed the local authorities to take a decision in the interest of the students."

He said many villagers said that they could not afford to send their children to private institutions in H D Kote and other places which is why they had decided to put them in Kerala government schools and are happy with the quality of education.

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