Torkham families asked to admit kids into Afghan schools
JALALABAD (Pajhwok): Government officials on Tuesday urged families in Torkham border town and Momand Dara district of eastern Nangarhar province to admit their children studying in Pakistani schools into schools on this side of the border.
Nearly 150 children from Torkham and Momand Dara district go to Pakistani schools by crossing the border known as Durand Line.
Recent restrictions on cross border movement unilaterally imposed by Pakistan have possibly affected these Afghan children who are currently on summer vacations from their schools in Pakistan.
Nangarhar deputy governor Mohammad Hanif Gardiwal told Pajhwok Afghan News the number of children going to school across the border had significantly decreased in the recent past. “We call on these families to admit their children into local schools.”
Nangarhar education department spokesman Mohammad Asif Shinwari confirmed about 150 Afghan children daily crossed the border into Pakistan to go school there.
“The number of such students has drastically declined. We have built primary and high schools in Torkham and Momand Dara, but still some students continue to study in Pakistani schools.”
He said most of the children belonged to Afghan families living across the border. The children accompanied their fathers daily to their workplace on this side of border and then returned to Pakistani schools.
“A few number of these children belong to families living in Torkham and Momand Dara, the children come from wealthy families who send their children to Pakistani schools son their own free will.”
Asif Shinwari said schools had been established in Torkham and nearby areas and hoped local residents would admit their children into these schools.
A shopkeeper in Torkham, Javed Shena, said the temperature in areas across the border had risen and summer vacations had started there. He said hundreds of children daily crossed the border into Pakistan to go to schools.
“Pakistan recently denied entry to Afghans not having visa and passport and the restrictions have possibly affected these children as well, but now schools in Pakistan are on vacations and it is hoped the restrictions will be lifted until that time.”
Pajhwok tried to find students studying in Pakistan, but could not find one because, according to a Torkham resident Imranullah, the number of such students has greatly decreased.
“A few years ago, my brother would go across the border to a school, but now thanks to God we have schools in Torkham and my brother is studying here,” Imranullah said.
Nangarhar provincial council secretary Zabihullah Zamarai told Pajhwok Afghan News the government should become serious and should forcibly prevent Afghan children from going to Pakistani schools.
“There is nothing illegal in studying in a foreign country, but it is a matter of concern that our children daily cross the border.”
He said Afghan children were taught Pakistani subjects which had a bad impact on their future.
Some time ago, Afghan children going to Pakistani schools had told Pajhwok Afghan News that they went to Pakistani schools because there was no school for them on this side of the border.
But now officials say dozens of schools have been established and made functional in the border town.
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