PESHAWAR: Parents of students and teachers at the Special Education Complex in Hayatabad, having been frustrated by government apathy, have gone to the higher court seeking the most basic of utilities: drinking water.
A petition has been filed in the Peshawar High Court (PHC) by Attaullah Khan, through senior Lawyer Muhammad Khurshid, who informed the court that to fulfil their basic daily needs, they have to purchase a water tankers from the Peshawar Development Authority (PDA).
However, Attaullah argued, the tanker is insufficient to fulfil the demand of students, staff members, and the affiliated women crises centre which was recently set up by the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) government in the complex.
The Parents Teachers Association of the Special Education Complex further told the court that they had informed the government in meetings and had also written to the authorities appraising them of the issues but little has been done.
With the government failing to extend the necessary support, the parents and teachers pooled their resources into a fund and bored for a tube well at a cost of Rs300,000. Despite the expenditure of money and the depth of boring, they were unsuccessful in tapping into an underground body of water.
Attaullah added that they had been told that it would cost an additional Rs500, 000 as to dig a well of up to 500 feet. But the cost identified is unaffordable for them.
“And now the officials of the PDA are also demanding a huge sum for the no-objection certificate (NoC) for the well,” the petitioner told the court in the petition.
“They do not even care about the innocent, specially-abled children and the deprived women at the crises centre.”
The court was told that the special education complex is spread over an area measuring 32 Kanals. It is dedicated to the education of specially-abled students with about 600 special students currently enrolled there from the first grade to matriculation level.
The court was further told that the centre employs 150 teachers and supporting staff while a hostel houses 50 students.
Within the same complex, the petition said that the K-P government had set up a women crises centre where 60 women were currently staying.
As an interim relief, the petitioner asked the court to direct the K-P government to ensure that at least five tankers of water are supplied every day to the special education complex and the women crises centre immediately.
Moreover, they urged the court to intervene and direct the K-P government to find a durable solution to the water crises at the complex by digging a tube well.
They also asked for the installation of a water filtration plant at the facility.
The PHC has admitted the petition and is expected to hear it on Friday (today).
Published in The Express Tribune, October 12th, 2018.