A case has been registered against the management of a school in Dakshina Kannada for enacting the 1992 demolition of Babri Masjid as part of a school event on Sunday.
The Bantwal Town police have booked a case following a complaint against Sri Rama School, in Kalladka town near Bantwal, filed by a member of the Popular Front of India. The case has been booked for offence under Sections 295 A (deliberate and malicious acts intended to outrage religious feelings) and 298 (uttering words,etc, with deliberate intent to wound religious feelings) of Indian Penal Code.
On Monday, a video clip showing the students enacting the demolition was widely shared on social media, attracting criticism. Lieutenant-Governor of Puducherry Kiran Bedi, Union Minister D.V. Sadananda Gowda, Karnataka Minister for Women and Child Welfare Shashikala Jolle, and Minister for Fisheries and Muzrai Kota Srinivas Poojary were among the dignitaries who attended the event. Ms. Bedi also shared a video clip from the event on her Twitter account on Monday.
The enactment of demolition was one among the 20-odd presentations made by nearly 4,000 students during their annual sports day ‘Kreedotsava’. Many on social media had said that it amounts to the school management sowing the seed of hatred in students.
Trustee defends event
Kalladka Prabhakar Bhat, a Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) leader, who is also a member of Sri Rama Vidya Kendra Trust that runs the school, defended the programme. “Our students have just enacted events that have occurred in the past. There are no slogans in it. This enactment ended with the recent the Supreme Court’s decision to allow construction of Ram Mandir.”
Mr. Bhat said that students also enacted the Chandrayaan-2 mission. “What is being discussed (on social media) is just a small part of three-hour long programme. There is nothing here to create religious discord. Enacting important developments of the year by students is a part of the annual Kreedotsava.”
Criticising the school management, Democratic Youth Federation of India State president Muneer Katipalla said such portrayals issue was an act of creating religious discord and a criminal case should be booked against the event organisers. It was wrong on the part of school to crudely display the Babri Masjid demolition, which has been criticised by the Constitutional bench of the Supreme Court.
While stating that the Social Democratic Party of India will fight for booking a criminal case against the school management, the SDPI Dakshina Kannada unit president Ataullah Jokatte, in a statement, said it was a surprise to see the district administration allowing an enactment that has potential to create communal tension.
Speaking about the incident, Primary and Secondary Education Minister S. Suresh Kumar said he had not seen the video. “We will seek a report from the jurisdictional Block Education Officer and then decide on our next step,” he said.