Sat rejects Arima Hindu School proposal
By JULIEN NEAVES Tuesday, July 22 2014
ARIMA Mayor George Hadeed has called on government to reverse a decision to relocate the Arima Hindu School to the former premises of the Arima New Government Primary School and instead, temporarily house the Hindu School at Pinto Road Community Centre.
In an immediate response, Sanatan Dharma Maha Sabha (SDMS) Secretary General Sat Maharaj, said that Pinto Road was too far and criticised “political interference” in the matter.
Hadeed made the suggestion yesterday at a media conference held at the Arima Town Hall, Sorzano Street, Arima.
He noted that the previous Arima New Government Primary School was part of the Arima Central Secondary School and a promise was made to eventually return the school to Arima Central. He said Arima Central was built to accommodate 400 students,but currently houses about 600 students, an overcrowding of about 40 per cent.
The Arima New Government Primary School, which is located in front of the Arima Central, has been vacant for two years as the school was relocated to a new site at Tumpuna Road.
Both the parents of Arima Central and the officials of the Arima Hindu School have complained of cramped conditions and requested the use of the vacant school facilities. The Arima Hindu School has also complained of dilapidated conditions.
A letter from the Ministry of Education, dated June 9, 2014 and signed by the acting Permanent Secretary, Simone Thorne Mora, stated that the ministry has given permission for the Arima Hindu Primary School to be accommodated in the Arima New Government building as a “short-term measure.” Maharaj had previously said the Hindu School only wants to temporarily occupy the vacant school building until the SDMS finds land to build a permanent structure.
Yesterday, Hadeed said that calls to his office from concerned parents of Arima Central have been increasing and he feared there would be protests. He recalled that Arima MP, Rodger Samuel, had promised that the facilities would be returned to Arima Central.