The increased animosity and aggression in people towards each other is emblematic of modern times. Never have communal and economic differences manifested so much. The path to doing the right thing hasn’t been easy and that’s why it is said that no good deed goes unpunished. This seems to have come true for this NGO running a school for children from poor households.
Two teachers of the school for slum kids in Jharsa Village have been beaten up by residents as a result of increased tension between them and the school authorities. The trust has claimed that the residents are unhappy because the slum kids are performing better and going places due to their talent.
Kartik and Karan, engineering student from Rajasthan, were teaching for a bridge school run by Eklavya Trust in Prempuri slums of Jharsa Village. Both have been severely beaten by rods for trying to seek some space to cross the road covered by construction material of one Nathuram.
Verbal arguments escalated into physical assault by Nathuram’s son using sticks and rods. The beaten teachers were chased by half a dozen men of the locality. However, they successfully ran away from the menace. The trust responsible for running the school has shut it down for an indefinite period.
Amit Garg is the founder of Eklavya Trust which runs the school. It has been running for 6 years and takes care of over 300 destitute children, a majority of whom are rag pickers. Most of the teaching staff is comprised of retired professors, people working in multi-national companies, etc., who work as volunteers.
Garg informed The Hindu,
The trouble started a year ago with some of our kids earning laurels for their hard work. Many of them have now been admitted to English medium schools and 8-10 of them are very brilliant. This does not seem to have gone down well with a few locals. While most of them are supporting the cause, a few are opposed to the running of the school.
Amit Garg also said that there were complaints of residents beating up children and molesting girls before. Now, the waters are way too troubled to sail their ship safely, therefore, the school will remain shut.
Vijay Kumar, Station House Officer at Sadar Bazar, said that both the accused, Nathuram, and his son Naveen, were arrested as soon as the FIR was lodged, and has assured full support from their side. However, the trust is still apprehensive fearing further violence.