Tribune News Service
Jammu, May 30
The state administration seems to have learnt no lessons from the Surat tragedy as private coaching centres in the Jammu region continue to run without fire safety measures, putting the lives of students at risk.
Of more than 300 private institutes in the Jammu region, only 51 are registered with the Directorate of School Education, Jammu.
In Jammu district, there are 31 registered coaching centres followed by seven in Udhampur, five in Kathua, five in Rajouri, two in Doda and one in Poonch.
Sources said the authorities had conducted the fire audit of the institutions being run without proper registration. “Even some of the registered private coaching centres have never undergone a fire safety audit by the fire and emergency department,” said a source in the education department.
As per the J&K Regulation of Private Tuition Centres Rules, 2010, no private tuition or coaching centre can function without the permission of the Directorate of School Education, Jammu.
“These institutes have in the past been asked to fulfil some formalities but there has been no specific mention about the fire safety audit, which is important. After the recent fire tragedy in a private coaching centre in Surat, the school directorate has issued a notice to all owners or proprietors of the private coaching centres to get the fire safety audit of their centres done,” an official said.
The official said the private institutes were also directed to furnish the no-objection certificate to the directorate, besides ensuring other safety and security measures.
The directorate has also decided that in future, all applications for registration should accompany the no-objection certificate from the fire and emergency department and the building safety certificate from the Executive Engineer, public works department, of the area.
Director, School Education, Jammu, Anuradha Gupta admitted that a number of private coaching centres in the Jammu province were not registered.
“Right now, we are focusing on the registration of coaching centres in the region. In this regard, a notice has already been issued to the owners and heads of the institutes. The institutes are registered on the recommendations of the District Monitoring Committees, which recommend only those centres which fulfil the prescribed norms, including safety,” she said.
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