With the walls sagging, the window panes broken and all toilets defunct, the Gujjar and Bakerwal hostel in South Kashmir’s Pulwama district is in pathetic condition with authorities paying no attention to it.
“Because of the less number of rooms, 12-14 boarders are occupying a single room,” sources said, adding that the rooms are meant for only three students.
The building has been taken on rent eight years ago and since then no repairing or maintenance has been done to the hostel building.
75 boarders from different tribal belts and 10 faculty members are occupying the hostel this time.
Sources within the hostel said the warden of the hostel has been paying no attention towards the maintenance of the building and most of the time he stays out of the hostel. “He comes twice or thrice in a week and rarely stays for the night,” sources informed, adding that it was because of “maladministration” that the hostel life has become a ‘headache’ for the boarders.
Moreover, sources said that out of 19 rooms in the hostel, only eight have been allotted to students. “The administration in the hostel is managed by persons who least care about the health and hygiene of students,” the boarders, who wished to remain anonymous, said.
Moreover, the location of the building has not been taken into consideration. “Because of the location of the hostel building, we have not been able to concentrate on studies,” they said referring to continuous noise from the nearby workshops and scrap dealers.
The ‘insensitivity’ Gujjar and Bakerwal Advisory board to maintain the standards of the hostel, district official say, is the major reason.
“I asked Gujjar and Bakerwal Advisory Board to find an alternate place for the building which they have not done yet,” DC Pulwama Neeraj Kumar said.
“Several deputations from the community came to me with their issues and concerns and then I myself visited the hostel to take first-hand details,” he said adding that then Gujjar and Bakerwal Advisory Board was contacted which is yet to respond.
When Kashmir Life reached Gujjar and Bakerwal Advisory Board they accepted that the warden o the hostel as “mismanaged” the affairs at the hostel. “We are going to change the warden soon,” Vice-Chairman Gujjar and Bakerwal Advisory Board, Zaffar Chowdhary said.
(Vikar Syed is a freelance reporter.)