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‘Samata School’ opened in Karnali to teach for 100 rupees closed

Towards the end of 2074, a team of ‘Samata Shiksha Niketan’ reached Kalikot. There was a plan to open a school in Kalikot. The team met and discussed with active representatives of local political parties and some social workers.

Samata Shiksha Niketan, established in 2001, ran a campaign to provide education at a fee of Rs 100 per month. The representatives of Samata Shiksha held a discussion that they wanted to open an English medium school in Kalikot that would provide education at a cost of 100 rupees. The Kalikot residents who participated in the discussion did not like the proposal to open such a school.

The process of establishing ‘Samata School’ in Manma, Kalikot headquarters, started on 1st Baisakh 2075. Local representatives of political parties and leading social workers assisted in completing the process.

Friends of Samata have come to Kalikot. They wanted to open a school. We helped,” said Laxman Shahi, a district member of the Nepali Congress. “We were volunteer advisors and gave advice and helped in the process of opening a school.”

The school did very well in the first year, but after that, in the second year, it deteriorated. Gradually the people of Samata Shiksha Niketan stopped coming in contact. The school was closed due to poor financial management.

It has been four years, the school is closed but the people of Samata Shiksha Niketan are not in touch. Teachers and staff have not been paid, house rent has not been paid.

Laxmi bank
Samata Shiksha Niketan rented the house of Narendra Upadhyay, a local resident, by paying Rs. The contract has expired but he has not received the rent amount.

He said that he has received only 365,000 rupees so far. He approached the court eight months ago to get the rent.

Narendra has rented the house to another private school after keeping the belongings of Samata School in one room.

They have not paid the rent for three years. There was a one-year discount, I was told to pay for two years, but the people from Samata have not contacted, Upadhyaya said, “I had to go to court to collect my money after not getting in touch despite repeated attempts.”

He said that after the contract expired, he contacted Uttam Sanjel’s brother Deepak, the founder of Samata Shiksha Niketan, and repeatedly requested him to vacate the house by paying the rent.

The school was closed in the second year. Even when I called, the person running the school did not come,’ he said, ‘After I stopped believing, I filed a complaint with the judicial committee of the municipality in February 2079. The judicial committee also called. A letter has also been sent but no one has come in contact.

After the expiration of the contract, he informed the police, kept the belongings of Samata School in one room and gave the house to another school.
The founders and managers of Samata Shiksha Niketan were also repeatedly contacted by the consultants, but there was no clarity about running the school, paying the rent and paying the salaries of the teachers and staff.

8 people including school principal, teacher, accountant and office assistant have not received salary.

Nepali Congress district member Laxman Shahi, local social worker Savin Kumar Bista and Congress leader and advocate Hikmat Bahadur Bista were the advisors. Hikmat Bahadur is currently a member of the Provincial Assembly of Karnali Province.

Shahi said that when he approached the founders and administrators after the school closure, they ignored him. He said that in the latest contact, ‘We have kept a record of who has to pay how much money, but we are unable to run the school’.

According to him, the board of directors was not formed. They were only volunteer advisors. Founder Uttam Sanjel never got in touch. His brother Deepak and another person named Sudarshan Poudel used to talk.

Shahi said that the three consultants were witnesses when the house was rented.

In the first year, the management of the school was overseen by the Kathmandu-based agency of Samata Shiksha, and there were no problems. A cluster (region) was assigned in the middle, then the problem began.

We used to contact Kathmandu directly and ask for clothes and books. In the second year, the student population became overwhelming. A person was appointed to look after the cluster from Kathmandu,” Shahi said. “The principal collected the money for the clothes and sent them to the cluster, but the clothes were not enough. It also came back small. Then he did not come.

The book did not come. The school was in chaos. Then the students went to other schools, Shahi said. Ravi Rokaya of Kohalpur was given the responsibility of looking after the Karnali cluster.

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Speaking in this regard, Rokaya said that he was not active in the cluster recently and was not aware of the schools opened in remote areas.

I also used to work as a volunteer. It was not always possible to work that way. I don’t even know how many schools there are,’ he said.

Shahi says that even though the organization that opened the school ignored them, they tried to run the school that had already started, but they did not succeed.

There was a problem with the landlord after the rent was not paid. The teachers and staff were not regular after not getting their salaries, he said, it would have been easier if the equality team had been in regular contact. After referring to the cluster, everything went awry.

Shahi said that they advised the homeowner to go through the judicial process. He also said that since he was a witness, he would help during the discussion.

How much did you charge?

Even though Samata Shiksha Niketan would provide education at Rs 100 per month, it would charge additional fees for various other topics.

I had to pay Rs 1,100 for the first month as an enrollment fee of Rs 1,000 and monthly fee of Rs 100. Then masi

He used to take a hundred rupees. Clothing and books had to be paid for separately.

Samata Shiksha Niketan opened schools in Kalikot, Jumla, Mugu and Dolpa in Karnali to provide quality education in English medium for a monthly fee of Rs. Currently all those schools are closed.

We ourselves have reached Jumla and Mugu and established schools. That responsibility was given to us,” said Shahi, “now whether those schools are open or closed, we have no contact.”

It has been a year since Mugu’s school was closed. The teachers-employees there have complained to the district administration office saying that they have not received their salaries.

The teachers and staff have not been paid for a year. They have applied to the district administration office for facilitation. Bodharth has been sent to the municipality,” said Bishnu Kumar Bham, Mayor of Chayanath Rara Municipality, “After receiving the application, I called a person from Samata Shiksha Niketan. They said that we cannot run the school anymore.

According to Chandananath Municipality’s head of education department, Khadananda Chounlagai, Samata School, which is said to have opened in Jumla, is not in the records of the municipality. He said that even though the municipality had approached the municipality to open the school, they had not given permission.

Samata School opened in Dolpa headquarters was also closed in the current academic year. Dil Prasad Rokaya, Head of Education Branch of Thulieveri Municipality, said that although permission has been given to run up to three classes in Dolpa, there is no name yet.

He said, “They could not even give us a statute.” Closed from the current academic year. They have not informed the reason for the closure.’

The school opened by Samata Shiksha Niketan in Dailekh is still running. According to Purna Prasad Upadhyay, Head of Education of Narayan Municipality, permission is currently up to five classes.

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