Goa school students made to perform rituals during mosque visit; principal suspended

The event was organised on the invite of an organisation affiliated to the banned Popular Front of India (PFI) and the students were allegedly made to perform religious rituals.

September 12, 2023 12:46 pm | Updated 02:27 pm IST - Panaji

The principal of a private school in Goa has been suspended after a right-wing organisation filed a police complaint that some students of Class 11 were allegedly taken to a mosque for a workshop and made to perform religious rituals there.

A member of the higher secondary school's management on Monday, September 11, informed about the principal's suspension, while a senior State education department official said they have sought an explanation from the school management in connection with the incident which took place last Saturday, September 9.

Some members of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) on Monday lodged a complaint with Vasco police against the principal of the school, located in Vasco town, for allegedly “supporting anti-national activities”, an official said.

They claimed the said workshop was organised last Saturday on the invite of an organisation affiliated to the banned Popular Front of India (PFI) and the students were allegedly made to perform religious rituals there.

A senior member from the school management said principal Shankar Gaonkar has been placed under suspension.

The management member also tendered an apology after a group of VHP activists went to the school on Monday and complained about Saturday's incident.

State Education Director Shailesh Zingde told reporters on September 11 that their department has sought an explanation from the school management and their response is awaited.

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