Chennai: Forty-five children, who hadstopped going to school out of fear of wild animals like tigers, have returned to their institution in Mudumalai, a tiger habitat in Nilgiris district, after the Tamil Nadu government provided jeep for their safe transportation. State Minister for School Education P Benjamin also said that state government’s self-defence programme for girl children has developed confidence among them. He said the Panchayat Union Primary School at Mudumalai in Nilgiris district caters to the educational needs of 100 families in areas of Puliyalam, Mundakarai, Melnagam Palli, and Kappur.
Tribals belonging to communities, including Kattu Naicker, live in such areas which are the natural habitat of tigers besides other animals like leopards, bears, wolves and hyenas, he told the Assembly yesterday. “As a result of provision of transport facilities, 45 children who had dropped out from fear of these animals have been coming to school safely and regularly,” he said, adding jeep was provided for transportation needs of children. According to the state government, Mudumalai Tiger Reserve in Western Ghats “is part of the huge tiger landscape in southern peninsular India which serves as source population of tigers in the region.”
On education vis-a-vis girls, he said Tamil Nadu is implementing several activities for the promotion of education and all round development of girl children. “One such programme is the self-defence training for the upper primary girls implemented during 2015-16,” he said adding the programme includes lessons and training on recognising danger, attacker, confidence, communication and physical (combat) skills through karate and other martial arts. For each district, 1000 girl students in seventh and eight classes were selected for self-defence training. “Totally 30,000 girls benefited from this training. Most of the parents commented that a great change occurred in the attitude and behaviour of their girl children. They developed greater confidence and self-esteem,” he said. PTI
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