V.P. Niranjanaradhya, educationist and frontline activist in the campaign for a universal and common education system, urged people to vote for the party that was committed to the implementation of the common education system in the State.
“Parties expected to talk on the resolution of people’s problems and development of society are speaking on religion, caste, and other such sensitive issues to divide people on cultural identities. It is their well-calculated move to polarise votes in their favour. We should not fall prey to their designs. Equal and common education is a fundamental pre-requisite for any society to progress and we should be firm in our demand for it,” Mr. Niranjanaradhya said, calling upon the people to declare that they would vote for the party that assures universal and common education.
Addressing a press conference in Basavakalyan of Bidar district on Saturday, Mr. Niranjanaradhya, who was associated with the People’s Alliance for Fundamental Right to Education (PAFRE), a conglomerate of 27 progressive and democratic organisations, expressed discontentment over, what he said, derailed the public discourse.
“We have a lot of problems to discuss and these are directly concerned with the lives of millions of common people. Quality education, poverty alleviation, providing jobs to the working population, and ending social and gender discrimination are some of them. Unfortunately, parties are not making them as their election issues. They are, instead, resorting to sensitive issues such as religion and caste. It is a conspiracy to deprive the vast majority of the population of their rights to education and decent life,” he said.
Mr. Niranjanaradhya added that Basavakalyan was chosen to launch the campaign for pressuring the political parties to accept demand of universal and common education and declare in their manifestos considering the historic importance of the town.
“Basavakalyan was the place where the Basavanna-led Sharanas led a revolutionary movement for equality. They fought against all sorts of social evils in their dream of realising a society free from exploitation, oppression and discrimination. We have chosen this historical town for the launch of our campaign to force the political parties to accept our demand for quality and common education and declare it in their manifestos,” Mr. Niranjanaradhya said.
Ramesh Dhakolli, a Dalit leader, said that he and his organisation was with the NAFRE to realise the long-cherished dream of universal and common education to all in the country.