In perhaps the first such instance in the twin-city, officials from the Mira Bhayandar Municipal Corporation (MBMC), led by Commissioner Sanjay Katkar, celebrated Diwali, the festival of lights, with orphaned economically backward children of single parents and underprivileged municipal school students, aiming to make the occasion an unforgettable experience for them.
The celebrations were held at the residential hostel in Chene village near Kashimira. The education department-run residential hostel is home to more than 45 students from Thane and Palghar districts who study in the municipal schools in the vicinity.
Officials distribute sweets, snacks
The municipal commissioner and other senior officers not only interacted with the students, distributed gifts, sweets, and snacks but also joined the children in enjoying the savories and bursting environment-friendly firecrackers. Later, Katkar inspected the hostel premises and inquired about required facilities so that they can be provided, resolving any difficulties the students faced at the earliest.
The civic administration had built the hostel in the year 2018 to boost the education prospects of students and simultaneously address their residential and dining woes. This facility in Chene village is among three such residential hostels run by the respective municipalities across the state.
In addition to nutritious food, the civic administration provides uniforms, school bags, shoes, books, and educational material free of cost to the students. Currently, there are 36 municipal schools that impart education in Marathi, Urdu, Hindi, Gujarati, and semi-English mode to students who mostly come from a poor economic background.
With around 1,000 fresh enrolments, the total number of students has crossed the 9,000 mark this year. To further narrow down the gap between civic-run schools and privately-operated education institutes, the MBMC, which has introduced digital classrooms, is also planning to introduce scholarship schemes and special English language coaching in the upcoming academic session.