The Maharashtra Government has informed the Bombay high court that they will start dedicated educational programmes on Doordarshan (DD) for students from Class 1 to Class 8 to impart education during the pandemic.
Government pleader informed a division bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice Girish Kulkarni which is hearing a public interest Litigation (PIL) by National Association for Blind (NAB) and NGO ‘Anamprem’ raising concerns over problems being faced by students with disabilities amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
The HC had suggested last week that the government should consider starting dedicated television channel or radio station to impart education to children with special needs during the Covid 19 pandemic as there are many children who either do not have smart phones or network coverage. Bedsides the needs of these children would be different depending on their disability.
The government pleader informed the HC on Thursday that they have Gyan Ganga programme on DD’s Sahayadri Channel which is for students from Class 9 to Class 12. However, the government pleader admitted that these programmes were not beneficial for children with hearing impairment. The Social Justice Department has asked DD to keep slot for one programme for children with hearing impairment, said the government pleader.
Besides the education department is planning to start similar programme for students from Class 1 to Class 9 within a month.
Uday Warunjikar, advocate for NAB and NGO Anamprem, said that so far the government doesn’t have any programme for students for Class 1 to Class 8. HE said that a video bank for these students needs to be prepared.
The HC has asked the petitioners to give their suggestions to the government on how the system can be improved.
Rui Rodrigues, counsel for National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT), said that they will look into the issue and find a solution.
HC has kept the petitions for hearing on August 12.