In March 2020, the School & Mass Education Department had issued a notification to close the schools having less than 20 students and merge those with nearby schools.
These schools included 6,350 primary, upper primary and higher schools which have less than 20 students and 5,177 schools which have less than 40 students.
However, the Government’s move had drawn flack from several quarters.
During the last winter session of the State Assembly, Congress MLA Tara Prasad Bahinipati created a flutter in the House threatening to slit his throat if the State Government went ahead with its decision to shut down the primary and upper primary schools with student strength less than 20 in the State.
Later, the Odisha Abhibhabak Mahasangh filed a PIL in the High Court against the State Government notification.