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Securing education in Afghanistan

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It is education that determines future of a country. A well educated nation will have a secure future and standard living as compared to those who failed to overcome challenges in education sector. Specifying this to Afghanistan one can aptly say that the future of our country is bound up with the future of students. Because, education is the sole tree which gives various type   of fruits at a time in form of civil servants including doctors, engineers, educationists, scientists, businessmen and so on, who can run efficiently day to day affairs of the government.

Looking into the recent issue of closure of schools in the Khogyani district of eastern Nangarhar province is confounding for the whole nation, because it's not just about the future of 4,000 students of a small district, but it is about the future of Afghanistan. If serious attention was not paid the situation will get worst and more schools will be closed down in other districts in future. Certainly, this will give birth to other grave problems. Ergo, we should not be carried away by illusions, and would have to foil bid of those who want to produce extremists or potential militants.  

As an example, we should study the situation of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan, where schools were destroyed by militants to prepare ground for recruitment of terrorists. It is evident that they succeed to some extent. That was the time when Islamabad was caught between the devil and the deep sea, although, the vacuum created by the destruction of government-owned schools was filled by private educational institutions. Unfortunately, here we lack private schools and colleges, it is feared that the government would not be in the position to equip youth and children with education if the situation prevailed. Hence, it is a big challenge and yet we to overcome it.

The immediate solution to the problem is to provide increased security to educational institutions in provinces bordering with Pakistan, such as Nuristan, Nangarhar, Khost, Paktiya, Paktika, Zabul, Kandahar and Helmand. Another solution, which seemed to be long term and durable, is to build community based voluntary committees in all districts of the said provinces, consisting of elders, education officers and district police chief. The committee will monitor suspected persons through its member and would be provide security voluntary after consultation with authorities concerned to schools.     

In addition to this, the education ministry should search for the bears with sore heads who threatened officials and teachers. Although, a Taliban spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid, denied their involvement in closing down schools, but the government has investigate the issue from every angle to find out the anti-education elements. Hopefully, they would be netted soon and could not escape by the skin of their teeth from the severe punishment for carrying out nefarious agenda of our enemies.





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The writer is a freelance journalist. He is an ICFJ fellow and did his master in International Relations and in Mass Communication.
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