Class casualties of outages


In the heart of PECHS Block II is a magnificent compound that has produced great women of Karachi: the PECHS Government’s Girls College and Girls School. Students who arrived at the school on Monday morning were in for a rude awakening: the entire area had lost electricity supply since 7am and their college was also affected.
Not only did electricity supply remain suspended on Monday, students faced the same fate on Tuesday, as PECHS Block II was deprived of electricity supply for more than 40 hours. “One of my friends collapsed in the heat yesterday,” a student named Sehrish told Pakistan Today. “Because of the incident, many others didn’t turn up today. Only God knows when the Karachi Electric Supply Company will stop bothering us.”
Those who did turn up on Tuesday argued that they saw little point in coming. “Classes were conducted yesterday, but today, they were suspended,” two students named Hafsa and Sundus told Pakistan Today. “We are planning to skip the next two days of classes since there is no electricity and there is no point of coming to the college. Why not sit at home tomorrow and day after” they argued.
Two intermediate students stated that their classes are suspended on account of study leave, but coming to the college at such a time was hardly beneficial. “We came here to collect some documents, but people are sweating, they are frustrated. Standing in this scorching heat is miserable, and when we go to classrooms, fans are not working either,” they said.
But two others, Marium and Nida, had much fun. “Classes are not being conducted, and our teachers have said that there probably won’t be any electricity tomorrow either. We had fun, we bunked our all classes without fear of being caught!” they said. “What I don’t understand is why the college management hasn’t taken any serious action to get electricity supply restored,” argued Arfah, a Bachelor of Arts student.
“Of course we are irked, we can’t study in this heat.” A teacher who was walking out of the main gate of the college, who requested anonymity, rebuffed students’ claims that classes were not being conducted. “Actually, we took our classes yesterday but a lot of students were absent from classes today. That’s the reason some teachers didn’t teach today,” she said.
On the other hand, Regional Director for Private Institutions, Ms Najma, expressed her complete ignorance over the matter. “I spoke to the principal today, but she didn’t say a word on the issue. Please tell me the names of the teachers you spoke to,” she said.