JHANG: Students wade through flooded fields. — Dawn
JHANG: Students wade through flooded fields. — Dawn

JHANG: The District Education Authority (DEA) has closed 13 public schools temporarily and shifted 10 other schools to alternative buildings after floodwater wreaked havoc on these.

Among these schools are government model primary schools of Bhochra, Khanowana, Patoana, Jandran, Kharora Bakir and Sultanpur Budyaki.

Sources said attendance of the schoolchildren started decreasing due to low flood and the DEA closed the schools for a few days.

The administrative officers of the education department were facing problems in visiting these schools, especially in rural areas, as their jeeps were withdrawn and they were allowed to use 800cc cars, they said.

District Education Authority CEO Attaur Rehman and DEO (Secondary) Zahoor Chohan told reporters that the decision to keep the schools close had been taken for the safety of the teachers and the students.

He said the deputy district education officers had been directed to remain in the field and coordinate with the heads of schools affected by low flood till the situation improves.

Many families living in villages on both sides of the Chenab have started moving to relatively safe places on a self-support basis. The flood water has damaged crops and destroyed houses at several places.

People allege that the Irrigation Department had billions of rupees for repairing and de-silting riverbeds and for the improvement of the safety walls of the Chenab but owing to improper discharge of the floodwater towards Trimmu Headworks, the water level is increasing in the Chenab beds and affecting the villages of Jhang.

Paddy, sugarcane and corn have been affected as are cattle sheds and houses at villages.

Another complaint is that the Jhang tehsildar and other revenue officials failed to fulfill the responsibility of timely informing those living along river belt about the flood situation.

Meanwhile, it is alleged the petrol prices in Jhang were arbitrarily enhanced by the filling stations due to possibility of flood.

Published in Dawn, August 18th, 2018