Express News Service
JHARKHAND: Going beyond the duty of maintaining law and order, the police in Simdega town of Jharkhand, have come up with the ‘Police Uncle Tutorial’ – a voluntary mission to help school dropouts complete their matriculation and fulfil the minimum qualification for applying in government and private jobs. This initiative will go a long way in helping curb crime as dropout students are more susceptible to human trafficking or are easily brainwashed by leftwing extremists to join their ranks. Regular students can also be a part of the initiative.
The Police Uncle Tutorial has enrolled 1,929 children in the district at 19 different centres with 170 resource persons. The Panchayat Bhavan compound is used for conducting classes after school hours.
“We provide free coaching for children and also for those appearing for Class X exams. We begin by guiding them every day for two hours to remove the fear of exams from their minds,” said Prem Kumar Sharma, the district coordinator of Police Uncle Tutorial.
He says there are several villages in Simdega which do not have a single matriculate student. “Out of 900 students enrolled with us last year, 245 got more than 60% marks, while 10 succeeded in securing over 80% in Class X board exams,” said Sharma. The Tutorial is also helping children to overcome social hurdles. Shifat Sana is one such student. She was a class 8 dropout as her parents did not want her to study further. “I approached Prem sir who took me to the Superintendent of Police. SP sir promised to bear all expenses of my studies following which I was admitted to the school. I will be appearing for the Class 10 exams this year,” said Sana.
“When told about the girl, I decided that she must continue with her education. And who else but me could have taken the initiative? I’d like her to become an integral part of the Tutorial,” said SP Shams Tabrez. He says Simdega being a Maoist hotbed, the initiative will help prevent youths from getting trapped by the Maoists or child traffickers in the long run. “Once someone gets minimum education, one can become eligible to join the Army and CRPF, which can improve their lives”, he said.
The children are also provided school bags, copies, pens, guess papers, lunch boxes and water bottles under communal policing. Officers in-charge of all police stations in the district have been assigned to create awareness about the Tutorial and identify dropout children. “I had left school after class 8 due to some family reasons, but the policemen approached my parents and convinced them to allow me to join the Tutorial,” said Bagni Kumari (17) from Gurgatoli in Simdega.
The Tutorial is actually a brainchild of the then IPS Sanjeev Kumar. Posted as Superintendent of Police in Simdega in 2019, he observed during an army recruitment drive that most candidates who had turned up did not have the minimum qualification of matriculation for such recruitment. The district police then targeted the dropout students to help them with matriculation examination. Initially, 16 centres with at least 50 students in each ere set up in the district.