The Bihar Post

Participation of schoolchildren in human chain not mandatory, Bihar govt tells court


PATNA: The state government today assured the Patna High Court that the human chain programme against alcoholism would not cause any inconvenience to the masses nor any action would be taken against the schoolchildren skipping the pogramme.

Bihar chief secretary and the DGP told the court that the participating in the human chain was not mandatory for the schoolchildren. They also said the state government had made alternative arrangements for traffic.

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The authorities were told to appear in the court after the previous reply of the government failed to satisfy the court.

The court will next hear the case on January 28.

Yesterday, the Patna High Court had asked the Bihar chief secretary and Director General of Police to appear in the court while strongly objecting to the reports of school children being forced to participate in the human chain.

The court expressed its annoyance while hearing a PIL filed by filed by the Forum for Public Interest Litigation.

A strong reprimand by the court comes amid reports of a physically-challenged girl student assaulted mercilessly by the school teacher in Nalanda after she fell unconscious during a rehearsal of the human chain programme on Wednesday. As many as six girl students fell unconscious during rehearsal, report said.

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Similarly in Rohtas district, the local authorities have asked the school children to participate in human chain along with parents failing which their enrollment will be declared illegal and they will be denied all the government facilities.

Through a letter issued on January 17, the authorities have also asked the school principals to ensure all the school children participate in the human chain programme without fail.

The state government has planned to form world’s longest human chain on January 21 to promote prohibition. The state government has claimed some 20 million people will join the human chain programme.

The idea, a brainchild of Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar, is aimed at promoting liquor prohibition which the state imposed last year.

Authorities said the 11,292 km-long human chain formation on the earth spreading from east to west and north to south would be photographed by satellites, drone cameras and helicopters.

Of the total over 20 million people who will be joining hands together to extend support, thousands of them will be children from 71,000 schools. To make the programme a success, the state government is working overtime.

The government believes world’s longest human chain will give a new identity to Bihar.

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