Singing the national anthem will be mandatory in all schools and colleges in the State beginning February 19, Minister for Higher and Technical Education Uday Samant said on Wednesday.
“We have taken a decision that the national anthem should be sung before college proceedings begin everyday. This will come into effect from February 19, on the occasion of Shiv Jayanti [birth anniversary of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj]. A letter pertaining to this directive will be sent to all the colleges,” Mr. Samant said.
The anthem will also be played at various programmes organised at college and university levels, said Mr. Samant,
“The decision to make the singing of the national anthem mandatory in colleges was taken unanimously… even if the attendance in colleges is 50% on a given day, no less than 15 lakh students would be singing the anthem before the start of classes,” said Mr. Samant, during his visit to the College of Engineering Pune (COEP) to take stock of new initiatives being undertaken by the institution.
Late last month, speaking at a function in Mumbai’s Elphinstone College, Mr. Samant had already made it clear that a directive would be soon be issued by the State government making it compulsory for educational establishments across the Maharashtra to sing the national anthem before commencement of classes.
The decision comes less than a month after the Uddhav Thackeray-led Maha Vikas Aghadi government made mandatory the daily collective recitation of the Preamble to the Constitution during morning assembly in schools across Maharashtra.