Patna DM orders closure of schools till Thursday amid intense cold conditions - Hindustan Times
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Patna DM orders closure of schools till Thursday amid intense cold conditions

Jan 24, 2024 11:47 AM IST

Patna shivered at a minimum temperature of 7.2 degrees Celsius on Tuesday, after recording the season’s lowest minimum of 5.1 degrees Celsius on Monday

The Patna district magistrate on Tuesday ordered that all schools till class 8, private and government, including pre-schools, anganwadi centres and coaching centres in the Bihar capital be shut for another two days till Thursday due to the prevailing intense cold conditions in the district.

Students attend school amid biting cold in Patna, Bihar on Tuesday. (Santosh Kumar/ HT Photo)
Students attend school amid biting cold in Patna, Bihar on Tuesday. (Santosh Kumar/ HT Photo)

Patna shivered at a minimum temperature of 7.2 degrees Celsius on Tuesday, after recording the season’s lowest minimum of 5.1 degrees Celsius on Monday. Banka, at 3.7 degrees, recorded the lowest minimum temperature of the season in the state on Tuesday, a Met department official informed.

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“Any violation of the order shall attract punishment under Section 188 of the Indian Penal Code,” district magistrate (DM) Chandra Shekhar Singh said in his order issued on Tuesday evening.

Singh also set aside an order from the director (middle school) of the Bihar education department that asked the district education officer (DEO) to ensure all schools remain open.

The director, in his letter to the DEO on Monday, said the Patna DM had not taken permission from the education department before ordering the closure of schools (till class 8) for two days on Sunday. He was referring to the letter by KK Pathak, additional chief secretary of the state education department, on January 20, asking officials to take permission from the education department before ordering any closure of schools.

Singh, in response to the director’s letter the same day, said he was well within his powers and jurisdiction as the district magistrate to order the closure of schools in view of the prevailing cold weather and low temperature in the district that posed health risks to children.

The DM’s letter, seen by HT, said he had issued the judicial order (of school closure) under section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, vested upon him as the district magistrate.

“There is no provision (in the CrPC) to take permission from the department, and no non-judicial order or letter can override it,” Singh said in his letter.

All 38 districts of Bihar recorded a minimum temperature in single digits, with Aurangabad having the highest of 9.5 degrees Celsius on Tuesday.

The Met department predicted dense to shallow fog and cold conditions to prevail across the state till January 27.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR
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    Ruchir writes on health, aviation, power and myriad other issues. An ex-TOI, he has worked both on Desk and in reporting. He over 25 years of broadcast and print journalism experience in Assam, Jharkhand & Bihar.

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