Questioning ‘winter vacations’ for higher classes
The policy of the Higher Education Department to, regularly, announce winter vacations has always been appreciated as well as criticized by the general masses here. While on one hand people blame it to be a bad policy for the reason that despite the valley witnessing massive shutdowns and Hartals, the Department was glued to its calendar taking no cognizance of the losses the student community suffers. On the other hand, the lack of heating arrangements as well a poor transport facilities during the winters makes it a hard choice for students to pitch for winter classes here. But the administration could do away with the issues, only if it wanted and listened to the voices of the student community as well as other stake holders. Kashmir Images reporter SALEEM IQBAL QADRI spoke to some people regarding winter vacations as here are the answers that he got:
Faheem Iqbal Qadri: As far as winter vacations for higher classes are concern, I think it is a total dull activity by Jammu and Kashmir Higher Education Department as everyone knows that the valley has been loosing precious academic days to the violence and hartals here. They are wasting time by announcing holidays and it will only add to the woes of the student community which has not been able to complete syllabus owing to the turbulent times that are persistently marring the academic sessions here.
Majid Mohi ud din Mir: Announcing winter vacations for higher classes are total useless and if higher education department can stop this activity it may save time of the students and they can continue studies. All higher schools and colleges have heating facility so what is the reason to announce winter vacations? Valley witnessed strikes most of times and turbulent times force authorities to shut educational institutions which results in loss of academic sessions here and now this winter vacations also adds to the loss.
Firdous Ahmad Ahanger: Our education system in Kashmir is dying gradually in view of the continued shutdowns that force educational institutions to remain off for months. It is bizarre that knowing all this, our higher education department announces winter vacations for at-least two months and I think this is not good for the students and most of them would want to study continuously. I am also a student of higher education and my institution has all heating arrangements. I don’t think there is any difficulty in attending classes at all.
Abdul Waheed : Announcing winter vacations for higher education is good decision and nowhere in valley you will find heating arrangements in the colleges and universities. The authorities promised, several times, that heating arrangement will be available across valley In the institutions but they have failed in doing so as on date. I am also a college student and I know what students are facing given the sub-zero temperatures in the valley. Until arrangements aren’t made, winter vacation remains the only way for the higher education department.
Sheikh Danish: The decision by higher education announcing winter vacation here is totally wrong, as we all know that the valley is a conflict zone and on an average valley observes shutdowns two to three days every week. Government administration should think about the decision regarding winter vacation so that the career of the students can be saved. Before reviewing decisions in future, the administration should ensure proper heating arrangements in the colleges in order to make full use of the winter session as well..
Irfan Ahmad Mir: This is a good decision as in absence of heating arrangements, students wont be able to concentrate on studies and would rather be fighting the chill. The institutions need to have adequate heating arrangements before they invite students for winter session. Also lack of transportation in acute winters is a big concern. I appreciate higher education department which is taking this decision every year but vacation should be restrict to only one month instead of three months.
Deeba Ashraf : Winter Vacations for higher classes are good and I fully support the decision. One basic reason is that weather is too harsh in Kashmir, especially in the month of January and February and we don't have enough heating arrangements available in the Colleges and Universities. Even if there is heating arrangement available, students still suffer while travelling. Not only this, break is a must for all. There is always need for change and winter vacations provide this to the students as well as the faculty. For 10 months a year, I have to go to university regularly, so I have reserved all my plans, be that going for internships, visiting relatives or whatsoever for the months of January and February as I know that we will be given winter holidays.