A 13-year-old student of Chumigthang Middle Secondary School (CMSS) in Pasakha, who fell into the swollen Baunijhora stream while crossing it on September 25, was kept for observation in the Phuentsholing hospital and sent home, according to health officials.

It was learnt that the class six student slipped into the stream when a senior carried him to cross the river.

Labourers at the construction site near the stream said the stream washed away the boy for few metres until it washed it off a gabion wall.

It was learnt that he injured his head.

According to a parent, Sangay Zangmo, the injured boy was brought was to Bangay basti clinic. “I gave him eggs but he couldn’t eat. His clothes were all covered in mud and I cleaned it for him.”

While the boy escaped with a minor injury, the stream has always been a problem to more than half of the 899 students of CMSS who have to cross the Baunijhora stream to go to school every day.

Students and parents say the river swells every time it rains, posing risk to the lives of the students.

A Pasakha resident, Chundu Dorji, said the deteriorating Pasakha road had become a burden.

“Hospital is very far from Pasakha and it would be difficult during emergencies,” he said, adding that the consequences would be bad if someone is seriously ill.

Chundu Dorji said summers had always been bitter for Pasakha residents who send their children to CMSS. “Parents should be cautious.”

Sangay Zangmo said students get stuck in the stream when it swells. “Not many parents come to drop and pick up their children.

The vice principal of CMSS, Karma Rinzin, said the management informed the parents through a common WeChat group not to send the students if the stream swells. “The injured student was also supposed to come in the school bus but had taken the river route that day.”

Rajesh Rai | Pasakha