Kolkata, Sep 17 (PTI) As schools are closed in West Bengal because of the pandemic for one-year-and-a-half, a teacher in West Bengal's Paschim Bardhaman district has brought the classroom to the doorstep of students.

The 32-year-old man has painted blackboards on mud walls of several houses on both sides of Jaba village so that children get to know the three Rs of education - reading, writing and arithmetic.

"Bengali and English alphabets and mathematics problems and their solutions are written on those blackboards with chalk," said Dwipnarayan Nayek, who has earned the sobriquet "Rastar Master" (the master on the road).

The walls on which the makeshift blackboards came up have been given a fresh coat of paint. Colourful graffiti, nursery rhymes and social messages including the need to take vaccines were also painted on them.

Classes are taken at regular intervals in the village in Jamuria area of the district, making both students and their parents happy.

Before Nayek, a teacher of Tilka Majhi Primary School in the area, brought the classroom to the doorstep of students, he had started taking classes beside a road under trees in eight spots.

"But attending classes under trees was not feasible for everyone due to the presence of insects. Besides, some of them have to help the elders in farming activities. So I decided to draw blackboard on the walls of their homes and take classes there," he said.

Initially, there were only two students and now their number has crossed 100.

Nayek also considered it important to fight superstition among the villagers. A section of the parents thought that those infected by malaria were possessed by ghosts.

"I have managed to bring a microscope to the class in the village and showed them the virus of malaria. I showed them how flowers bloom and how trees grow. Most of these children are in primary stage and they are first generation learners," said the teacher.

"I have invented my own teaching manual for them," Nayek smiled as he asked his students, many of them girls, to chant a rhyme written by him on the need to wash hands regularly, and clap after every line.

Nayek does not charge anything from his pupils for the service and pulled all his resources. He also gets help from family and friends.

"I hope I will be able to ensure zero dropout among children in the area when the school will reopen. But I would like to continue with the present initiative," he said.

Rimki Oraon, a student of class six, said they were sad when the school got closed due to corona.

"But later, sir started taking classes on road and then at our doorstep. We are very happy now." Sital Baski, a villager, said they thank Nayek for coming forward to teach the children when the school is closed.

"The initiative of the teacher is laudable. We are on his side," Jamuria MLA Hareram Singh said.