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COVID19: Karnataka students climb hill for internet for online classes

Due to coronavirus pandemic, the schools are shut and the students are forced to take up online classes. However, not everyone can afford a smart phone for classes and in a few places, it is not easy to get mobile internet signal.

Karnataka’s Dakshina Kannada district could not easily connect to the virtual lessons, forcing them to climb small hills to catch the signal.

Students from Perla, Bandihole, Hosathota, Boodudamakki, Shibaje, Belthangady and others in the coastal district are climbing hills for internet connection.

They live in a place surrounded by forest and hills. It is difficult to get mobile signal in places like this.

Despite the difficulty, the officials say that no student have come forward to complain about the situation.

“We have not received any complaint from anybody about the lack of mobile internet connection,” told newly arrived Deputy Commissioner K. V. Rajendra.

Yathish Ullal, Assistant Commissioner of Puttur, managed to connect with the students from the villages and offered them a solution or two, after learning about the issue only on Monday.

“These are all peripheral villages. Dakshina Kannada has an area overlapping with the Western Ghats. This Shibaje village is in the core of the Western Ghats. Meriar, Shibaje, Charmadi, all these villages come in the boundaries, obviously, there is a network issue,” said Ullal.

Ullal suggested to students to go to Village gram Panchayats which are connected by Digital India broadband connection.

However, the students are not ready to avail the service because they don’t want to move out of their place, though it is a forest. “They don’t want to move out of their comfort zone. It is their backyard, doesn’t mean it is some forest. It is not some remote area,” he said.

“They are not interested. They were telling we are happy here, we are enjoying, it is a nice facility for us, why should we be worried about it,” he pointed out.

Dakshina Kannada is 347 away from Bengaluru by the coast.

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