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Runaway, abandoned kids pursue education in Platform School

Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan.

Nagpur:  A group of 45 children comprising abandoned and runaway children from across Maharashtra and other states are being imparted education at a residential ‘Platform School’ here under Centre’s flagship programme Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan.

The ‘Platform Dyan Mandir’ better known as Platform School is run in a premises provided by the Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) in Bajaria locality near the railway station here.

The educational expense of these children is borne by the government under the SSA.

These children, mostly boys, were found living in an isolated manner at railway platforms across the state and mostly indulged in begging, bag lifting and stealing.

A majority of them are runway children who left their homes due to various reasons including domestic violence, quarrels and mental torture. Poverty is also one of the reasons to leave home as some parents were unable to feed them two time meals, Shrikant Aglawe, the man behind the concept told PTI.

These children are now blossoming against odds, he said.

One of the residential school inmates, a teen aged boy from Bhandara who ran away and was picked up from Mumbai, has done well in the HSSC examination scoring 60 percent marks.

The Platform School is providing him all sort of assistance since he is seeking admission in a local Engineering College to pursue not only higher education but also higher goals.

Similarly, two other boys have cleared SSC.

“Here in the Platform School, we are inculcating a sense of belonging in these inmates and are trying to bring them into the main stream.

Also, over a period of time, they had developed some bad habits while roaming on platforms..We are working on it, Aglawe, who is also city president of VHP, said.

The concept of starting such a school for these school dropouts and orphaned children germinated while travelling with a senior VHP functionary few years back when they came across such children begging on platforms in shabby clothes, he said.

These children are from various states like Madhya Pradesh, Chattisgarh and Bihar, Aglawe added.

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