Public Hearing on RTE – Mangalore

March 26, 2013

The Public Hearing on RTE was organised on March 12, 2013 at SDM Law college, Mangalore. Dr. Umesh Aradhya, Chairperson KSCPCR Inaugurated the Program, Mr. Vasudeva Sharma, Mrs. Ramila Shekar, Ms. Asha Naik, Mr. Krishna Shastri Balila were the Jury members.

Click for the Report in Kannada

Dr. Umesh Aradhya, Chairperson, KSCPCR Inaugurating the Public Hearing

Dr. Umesh Aradhya, Chairperson, KSCPCR Inaugurating the Public Hearing

A parent deposing the violation his son undergone

A parent deposing the violation his son undergone

DSC_4279


Workshop on RTE – Vishakapatnam

March 26, 2013

The regional level workshop on RTE was organised in Youth Hostel, Vishakapatnam from March 15 – 16, 2013. A total of 50 participants from Nellore, Guntur, Srikakulam, Vishakapatnam, Viziyanagaram, Krishna, Ongole, West Godhavari and East Godhavari districts of Coastal Andhra region participated in the training.

Mr. M. Venkateshwara Rao, Project Officer - RVM, Visahakapatnam addressing the participants

Mr. M. Venkateshwara Rao, Project Officer – RVM, Visahakapatnam addressing the participants

Mr. K Ramakrishna Rao, Member, CWC -Vishakapattanam, handling session on Child Rights Protection and JJ Act

Mr. K Ramakrishna Rao, Member, CWC -Vishakapattanam, handling session on Child Rights Protection and JJ Act

scan0005

scan0012


RTE Regional Workshop at Kadiri on 3rd & 4th February 2013

February 8, 2013
Mr. Gangadhar (Program Coordinator), Mr. I. Srinivasa Rao (Convener, CACL-AP), Mr. Chenna Krishna (MEO, Kadiri), Ms. C. Bhanuja (Director, REDS) and Mr. S S Rayudu (Convener, CACL - Rayalaseema) at the inaugural

Mr. Gangadhar (Program Coordinator), Mr. I. Srinivasa Rao (Convener, CACL-AP), Mr. Chenna Krishna (MEO, Kadiri), Ms. C. Bhanuja (Director, REDS) and Mr. S S Rayudu (Convener, CACL – Rayalaseema) at the inaugural

Bilingual handbook (Telugu & English) on RTE Act released at the Training

Bilingual handbook (Telugu & English) on RTE Act released at the Training

Mr. S S Rayudu, Convener, CACL - Rayalaseema, handling session on Child Rights

Mr. S S Rayudu, Convener, CACL – Rayalaseema, handling session on Child Rights

Participants and the resource team

Participants and the resource team


RTE Regional Workshop @ Kolar – 17 & 18 Jan 2013

January 23, 2013
Mr. Gangadhar, Program Coordinator facilitating  discussion on the State Rules of the Act

Mr. Gangadhar, Program Coordinator facilitating discussion on the State Rules of the Act

Mr. Lakshmi Prasanna from APSA handling session on the RTE Act

Mr. Lakshmi Prasanna from APSA handling session on the RTE Act

Participants and Resource Team

Participants and Resource Team


RTE Regional Workshop @ Gadag – 19 & 20 Dec 2012

January 23, 2013

191220122058

191220122065

201220122098


Wrongs and rights

December 12, 2012

A Bangalore-based NGO, SICHREM, has been conducting human rights education programmes in over 100 schools and colleges that the government and other agencies run.The NGO also monitors and reports human rights violations in Bangalore and other districts of the State. Pushpa Achanta chalks out the programmes of the organisation.

“Charity begins at home,” said the wise. But the founders of the South India Cell for Human Rights Education and Monitoring (SICHREM) decided that they would make human rights “a household concept”. For the last 17 years, this NGO with its headquarters in Lingarajapuram (in north-east Bangalore), has been involved in creating awareness on fundamental rights to socially marginalised people.

Apart from this, it also enlightens people from low income backgrounds on relevant legislations, government schemes and entitlements. For these activities, SICHREM collaborates with other NGOs and community-based organisations (CBOs) that work among people who are financially challenged.

SICHREM has been conducting human rights education programmes in over 100 schools (for classes VI-VII over a three-year period) and colleges that the government and other agencies run.

These extensive courses cater to students and members of the faculty.

“Hearteningly, students receiving human rights education in government schools ensure that their teachers are regular. And the staff is wary of corporal punishment,” observed Margaret Sampath who handles human rights education and counselling at SICHREM.

The NGO also monitors and reports human rights violations in Bangalore and other districts of Karnataka. It intervenes legally on behalf of people abused by government representatives or others.

The journey

Around two decades ago, some concerned citizens from Bangalore, who were previously associated with the civil liberties movement, envisioned a fearless society which respects the rights of the most marginalised, uniformly.

To respond to the growing insensitivity to the law, they started SICHREM in 1995. “Being non-negotiable on responsible governance and affirmative action is the raison d’etre of SICHREM. We believe in showing absolute solidarity with survivors of discrimination, repression and violence irrespective of whether the perpetrator is the state, an individual, group or entity,” said Manohar R, the Head of Programmes at the NGO.

This level of conviction and commitment to their duties is visible among all members of the staff at SICHREM.

As it grew in Bangalore, SICHREM also set up human rights centres in the headquarters of five districts of Karnataka in collaboration with voluntary organisations that were active in the local areas.

These units have been carrying out many tasks pertaining to the documentation and tracking of human rights violation—caste, gender or faith based violence on individuals or communities, intimidation of juvenile or adult survivors of abuse who seek redressal through legal means, torture of prisoners—carrying out awareness and protest campaigns where required.

Reaching out

Among the primary initiatives of SICHREM are the mobile legal clinics that it has been running for the last seven years. Chithra Ranganadan, who is the associate co-ordinator for Right to Education at SICHREM said, “Through CBOs associated with people living in different financially backward neighbourhoods in Bangalore, we conduct interactions every month. During each session which lasts for about four hours, two volunteer lawyers advise 12-15 residents on how to resolve their domestic, employment or other challenges and disputes.”

For instance, SICHREM recently held its clinic in an economically deprived part of Vivek Nagar (a locality in south central Bangalore) in partnership with Ananya Global Concerns, an NGO based in Bangalore, which mainly helps local women and children who are susceptible to trafficking and gender violence and also gives educational support to school students.

One of the women present that afternoon was Mary, a 35-year-old domestic worker and mother of four young children whose husband Peter has become an alcoholic. She said, “Peter was fairly responsible and used to sell tea for a living. But ever since he started drinking, he prefers to remain aloof and is hardly willing to talk to anyone in our immediate environment or our family. My earnings are insufficient to run the household”.

The male lawyer present suggested that Mary could take her husband to the next session so that he could try to counsel the latter.

And when Saroja, aged 29, talked about her difficulty in providing monetary support for her unemployed and physically challenged younger brother Saravanan, the other lawyer advised her that Saravanan could apply for the government scheme that provides financial assistance to people with disabilities to establish an income generation enterprise. The lawyer also confirmed with Saroja that her brother was able to avail of the disability pension that the government gives.

Helpline

Yet another important element of the services that SICHREM provides is its helpline (ph: 080-25473922/2856, helpline@sichrem.org),  which it operates from its office in Bangalore.

Launched in November 2000, it offers professional counselling to people in distress, from 9.30 am to 5.30 pm, Monday through Friday and between 9.30 am and 12.30 pm on Saturday in Kannada, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Hindi and English. “The help line was open only in the afternoon on every Friday, initially.

But the number and type of calls encouraged us to increase the duration of availability of the help line. We now receive an average of 20 calls per day on marital issues, wage problems, child labour et al. Further, a lawyer is also accessible between 3.30 and 5.30 pm from Monday to Friday at the SICHREM office”, shared Manohar.

So, if you want to learn about your basic rights and duties, know how to hold the government accountable or assist someone who is facing the wrath of the state or community, you know whom to contact.

Source: Deccan Herald; Dated 11/12/2012


Bringing back drop-out children to school

July 5, 2012

Ms. Chithra, Block Monitor of the Social Audit exercise at Pulikeshinnagar along with the Ward Facilitators participated and addressed the gathering about Right to Education in the program “Shaalegagi Naavu Neevu”, an initiative of the Education Department to create awareness about Right to Education and to check drop-out rates in government schools.


44 KVs in Karnataka proved implementing RTE

June 29, 2012


Findings of concurrent monitoring under Social Audit Exercise on RTE in Bangalore

May 25, 2012

National Commission of Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) jointly with South India Cell for Human Rights Education and Monitoring (SICHREM) conducted social audit on the RTE Act in Bangalore. The social audit exercise held in 47 schools of 5 wards in Bangalore city namely KR Puram, Shivaji Nagar, Vasantha Nagar, Pulikeshi Nagar and Chamaraj Pet. Schools selected for this exercise were government schools, aided schools and BBMP schools. Private schools have not selected because Government of Karnataka is not notified its state rules during the process was taking place. The major findings of the concurrent monitoring and actions initiated by the team are as follows.

1.      Infrastructure

  • All Aided and BBMP schools have building whereas majority of the government schools are running in old buildings which are not all weather structures and there is no proper ventilation.
  • All BBMP schools (except GKTMS, Clevelend Town) have neither drinking water facility nor usable toilets whereas all aided and government schools have water connection along with the well maintained toilets. But there are no separate toilets for girls in few government schools and girl children using teachers’ toilets or nearby public toilets. Situation of the toilets in schools is at good condition after the intervention. Hafeezia School, Shivaji Nagar – BBMP, Tasker Town, Vasanth Nagar
  • Majority of the schools have no playground at all.
  • There is no separate room for the library in all 47 schools. The library books kept in locked cupboard and kept in HMs room. Since it is kept in HMs room no child is ready to enter the HMs room and read freely.

2.      Incentives

  • All the children entitled to get incentives such as note book and uniforms have received a set. But uniform being distributed was not as per the child’s size.
  • A total of 2335 children from 47 schools are eligible to receive SC/ST scholarships have not applied, because it is mandatory to submit caste certificate during the time of applying for the scholarship.
  • Availing of caste certificates is the major challenge to the parents as they are unable to meet the demands of the officials and agents helping them in getting the caste certificate and pay amounts higher than the value of the scholarship.
  • The main problem for parents is spending at least 3-4 days in getting caste certificate as it is impossible to avail a certificate in a day’s time and the parents who live on daily wages do not want to lose 3-4 days wages for a scholarship of just Rs 250.
  • An allegation made on the officials by the parents was that availing of caste certificate consumes 3-4 days of wages along with at least Rs. 500 – Rs. 1000 of bribe.  Renewing of caste certificate for every five years (it is changed recently) is unscientific and unnecessary process despite caste is never been changed at all.
  • There is lack of awareness amongst people about the presence of Nemmadi Kendra’s, the number of centres is very less and it is very difficult for people to access the same in Bangalore. Hence people are facing towards agents to get the same by paying them.
  • No child is received free bus pass from the Government directly.

3.       Mid Day Meal

  • Isckon, Mausim Shariff Foundation and Adamya Chetana are the major institutions serving food to schools across Bangalore. The main problem with the food is quality of rice is not good to prepare. There is difference quality of rice is being distributed from Isckon to Government and BBMP schools.
  • Children are being used to clean toilets, carry and wash Mid Day Meal utensils. No (Group – D) Ayah is been appointed despite Government circulars available relating to appointment of Ayahs in primary schools.

Major Problems with MDM

  • Rice is like paste / smashed / turning in to thick.
  • Food being served is not as per menu given by the Government.
  • Especially the quality of the curd rice is very bad and rice is not cooked well / half boiled / over boiled, so that children don’t eat.
  • Food is being wasted when Tomoto Rice/ Pulav is served because there is no curd with it. Incomplete supply and same vegetables used daily.
  • Children do not want to eat samber and white rice because quality is very bad. Hence food is being wasted at large amount daily

Other findings

  • Teacher using children to domestic works especially Girl children are using for their domestic and personal works as well.
  • The computers provided by the Government are never been used at all in all schools. They have been dumped in a room and filled with dust. Now the situation of computers is very bad.
  • Food is being wasted at large amount due to the poor quality.
  • Corporal Punishment is still practicing in majority of the schools.
  • SDMC complained that teacher used to come to school only in the afternoon

Recommendations

  • The Government of Karnataka should take initiation to build all weather class rooms (buildings) with drinking water and separate toilet facility to girl children in each school across Karnataka.  And also ensure enough space for playing ground, library with books and water connection in each school.
  • It is suggested that a Tahsildar visit schools and provide the children with caste certificates and preferably a drive to be conducted by the Tahsildar deputed by the Government to issue caste certificates to the children.
  • Government facilities especially, Bus Pass, Note Book, Uniform and Text Books should reach children on time.
  • Using of computers and Books in library must be free to access by children.
  • Good quality of food (Rice and Vegetables) must be served to all schools without any discrimination. A standard menu should be followed by each organisation as per the directions given by government and the menu should be changed at least once in a month. We recommend that the appropriate initiatives to be taken to carry MDM utensils and to collect the same on the same day itself so that we could prevent children from washing the same.
  • Group D workers should be appointed immediately in every school across state.
The following are the articles carried by different daily’s on the same issue after the Press Meet held on 24th May 2012, 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


Hands on Training on Post Facto Monitoring Exercise

January 6, 2012

National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) in collaboration with South India Cell for Human Rights Education and Monitoring (SICHREM) organised a Hands on training on the Post facto Monitoring Exercise of the NCPCR’s Social Audit exercise in Bangalore from 26th to 30th December 2011 at The United Theological College (UTC), Bangalore, Karnataka for its Block Monitors and the Ward Facilitators of Karnataka Social Audit team. The training was inaugurated by Ms. Nina Nayak, Chairperson, KSCPCR. Ms. Kiran Bhatty, National Coordinator-RTE Division, NCPCR and Mr. Mathews Philip, Karnataka State Representative, NCPCR graced the occasion.  The objective of the training is to learn and conduct the proposed community monitoring process under the RTE Act. As part of this intensive training, the participants visited Govt. Kannada Model School in Pottery Town, Pulikeshinagar, Hafeezia Corporation school (BBMP) in Shivaji Nagar Ward and Govt. Kannada Model School in Vasanth Nagar ward. The team also conducted a community meeting in Pulikeshinagar Slum on the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act and its provisions. The resource team of the training includes, Ms. Sriranjani Vadiraj, Ms. Priyanka Varma, the Regional Coordinators of the RTE Division-NCPCR, Mr. Thomas Antony, District Coordinator of NCPCR’s Social Audit program in Delhi and Mr. Gangadhar Reddy, District Coordinator of NCPCR’s Social Audit Exercise in Karnataka.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.