KSU steps in to repair border school
The Khasi Students’ Union has decided to repair a lower primary school in Meghalaya’s Ri Bhoi district in the disputed Block II along the border with Assam. The school was allegedly dismantled by Assam police in August last year.
The union members on Saturday donated CGI sheets to the school at a function where students, teachers and the managing committee of the school were present.
The state government had ordered a departmental inquiry into the incident. According to the inquiry report, a portion of the building, which was under construction and sanctioned by the Ri Bhoi district mission coordinator for 2017-18, was destroyed by Assam police.
According to the union, the school is currently functioning from a temporary structure, which was no more than a cowshed.
A member of KSU’s North Khasi Hills unit, Banjop Maring, said they had met state education minister Lahkmen Rymbui and others urging them to repair the school but got no response.
“We met the deputy commissioner, school education officer and the education minister but their lackadaisical attitude has forced us to pitch in and repair the school,” Maring said.
KSU’s education cell chairman Readyonstone Nongrum warned that if Assam police continued to commit atrocities on the people of Meghalaya living along the border, it will have to do something to stop it.
Former KSU vice-president Frederick Kharmawphlang urged the villagers to stay united. “We should stop saying we are staying in Block I or Block II or in a disputed area, because if we do so, it means we agree these areas are disputed,” he said.
There are 12 areas of difference between Assam and Meghalaya along the border.
The areas are Tarabari (4.69 square km), Gizang (13.53 sq. km), Hahim (3.51 sq. km), Langpih (298.07 sq. km), Borduar (147.83 sq. km), Boklapara (1.57 sq. km), Nongwah-Matamur (137.51 sq. km), Khanapara-Pilangkata (2.29 sq. km), Desh Doomreah (487.72 sq. km), Block I and Block II (1,547.42 sq. km), Khanduli-Psiar (76.80 sq. km) and Ratacherra (11.2 sq. km).