Mahim Pratap Singh

BHOPAL: Students of government schools in Madhya Pradesh “celebrated” Teachers’ Day, washing the feet of their teachers as part of Guru Paada Pooja made mandatory by the BJP government.

From banning nursery rhymes in schools two years ago, making Surya Namaskar, Pranayam, and the Bhojan Mantra compulsory in public schools, and christening teachers Rashtra Rishis, the BJP government seems to have left no stone unturned in saffronising public education, activist organisations across the State said.

Petition submitted

“We have submitted a petition to the Governor against the nomenclature of Rashtra Rishi and several other measures that aim at communalising the secular space of education,” said L.S. Hardenia, senior journalist and former executive chairperson of the State-level National Integration Committee, under the chairmanship of the former Chief Minister, Digvijay Singh.

“The Education Minister has acted against the spirit of the Constitution by imposing practices and nomenclatures of a particular religion on students,” Mr. Hardenia added.

Rather than making cosmetic changes, “the government should focus on improving our salaries and bringing them on a par with those of Central government teachers as per the Sixth Pay Commission,” said R.K. Naval, organising secretary of the Madhya Pradesh Shikshak Sangh.