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In the wake of the bloodcurdling murder of 7-year-old Pradyuman Thakur in Gurugram's Ryan International school, the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) has written to schools across the country to ensure a safe environment for children.
The paramilitary has written several letters to schools like KVs, DPS, Doon and Scindia, stating that it can offer professional security consultancy services and create a 'safe and secure' environment for children. As per news agency PTI, the consultancy fee would be around Rs 4 lakh for average schools. Some high profile schools spend Rs 20 lakh on private players for the same job. The CISF, however, will not provide its security to schools.
Need for 'revisiting' security infrastructure of schools
While investigations continue to find out exactly how Pradyuman's murder happened, the fact remains that a young life was lost and the school authorities can hardly escape charges of neglecting safety measures.
Pradyuman, a Class 2 student was found dead in the school bathroom with his throat slit by a sharp-edged weapon on the morning of September 8.
"It is felt that in the wake of the recent unfortunate incident in one of the reputed schools in the national capital region (NCR) in which a young student lost his life, there is now a need for revisiting the security infrastructure of our schools. You will agree that a healthy and secure environment is a right of every child and schools have a major role to play in the providing the same," the CISF letter addressed to school principals read.
CISF Director General O P Singh said the force took the initiative as part of its responsibility towards society.
Schools that have been offered consultancy by CISF
Among those who have been sent the offer letter include the Navodaya Vidyalaya Samiti, the Delhi Public School Society, the Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan, Springdale, Salwan Education Trust, Modern School, Sanskriti, Mother's International, Shri Ram and Appejay Education Society in Delhi.
The force has even approached the Ryan Group of Schools in Mumbai, the Doon School in Dehradun, Scindia School in Gwalior and Rishi Valley in Chitoor in Andhra Pradesh even as many more such letters are being dispatched.
At present, CISF has been offering consultancy to about 200 institutions.
The force that works under the command of the Union home ministry has conducted similar security consultancy for the Dhirubhai Ambani International School in Mumbai and has similarly audited a number of Indian Institutes of Management (IIsM) and Indian Institutes of Technology (IIsT).
Three reputed schools in Delhi have replied to the CISF and expressed the desire to hire its services, sources told TOI.
117-pt safety checklist issued by AAP-led Delhi govt
Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government issued a 17-point “checklist for school safety” on issues including entry of visitors, school toilets and CCTV cameras.
Here are some of the points:
— The circular guides schools in the procedure to set up committee that will comprise of the Head of the School, four students, four parents from the School Management Committee and Parent-Teacher Association, one senior teacher, one primary teacher and one non-teaching staff
— The Committee must undertake a “Monthly Safety Walk” of the school premises on a fixed day every month in order to ensure compliance with the safety checklist.
— Firewall, filtering and monitoring mechanisms must be installed in all computers in the school premises
— All staff entering the school must have ID Cards
— All toilets for primary classes must have women staff for cleaning or maintenance and no male staff should be deployed there
— Secluded or abandoned areas of the school including the terraces should be under CCTV surveillance
— Schools must ensure that they have processed police verification of all staff
— CCTV cameras should be properly maintained by the government