By Suchandana Gupta,
BHOPAL: Following reports of alleged rapes of minor boarders in a state-run residential school for tribal girl students in Chhattisgarh’s Kanker district, the Madhya Pradesh government has issued a 14-point order to district collectors ensuring the safety of tribal girls in government hostels.
Two days after the matter came to light in Chhattisgarh, the Madhya Pradesh tribal welfare department issued the directive instructing that only women superintendents and wardens should be posted in charge of tribal girls’ hostels. Any inspection by a government official, principal or teachers should be accompanied and in the presence of the woman hostel warden.
The directive dated January 8 from principal secretary of the tribal welfare department PC Meena said that such tribal girls’ hostels should have a woman doctor on duty. Every girl must have a health card and undergo a monthly health check-up, the record of which is to be maintained by the hostel doctor.
All outdoor excursions for girl students should be in the accompaniment of women teachers. The state has asked for the establishment of Women Teachers’ Committees in the schools. This committee should be in constant conversation and provide psychological, physical and mental counselling to the young adolescent girls so they do not feel unprotected away from their families and homes.
District administrations have been asked to make arrangements for adequate lighting within the tribal girls’ hostel premises. All such hostels are to be securely locked from inside during the night hours. Information and background details of all residents should be available with the residential school principal and warden. The security guard or `choukidaar’ should keep records of visitors coming into the premises. Principal and warden should regularly check this register.
Every tribal girls’ hostel wall should display a graffiti with 1090 helpline number, the order said.