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Guru Utsav or Teachers Day?

Guru Utsav or Teachers Day?

As Modi government completes 100 days in office on Wednesday, the new government has certainly raised a few eyebrows many a time due to its “Hindutwa” agendas for transforming India into a Hindu nation.

These 100 days of Narendra Modi, that were pledged to be the much hailed “achche din”, seem to be days of worry rather than hope for the people especially minorities and this has been palpable from the very stance he has always maintained regarding the country’s population other than the Hindus. The latest controversy sparks from the Centre's move to rename Teacher’s Day on September 5 as 'Guru Utsav' and making the PM’s speech to school children on that day a compulsory event. The move from the Human Resource Development Ministry to make the speech mandatory have also created a centre- state confrontation and has been denounced by the Congress and other political leaders including BJP allies MDMK and PMK. HRD Minister, Smrithi Irani later clarified with the media that the move was not to offend anyone and that it was not compulsory for the students saying that “Guru Utsav” was not Teacher’s Day but an essay competition for the children.

The Director of Education, K Gopalakrishna Bhat, IAS, issued a circular on August 29 consisting of the directions from the centre regarding the 1 ¾ hour long PM’s speech to be held on Teacher’s Day. All arrangements for listening to the Prime Minister’s address on September 5 scheduled to take place between 3 – 4.30 pm, were to be completed before 2.30 pm on the day and teachers for translating the speech were to be present. Instructions for purchasing television or radio for the purpose using the SSA fund and a trial display on September 1 were strictly ordered. The report regarding the preparations, the number of children participating and the medium used were to be submitted on the same day at 5 pm. It is palpable that all these stringent measures reiterate the Ministry’s plan to make the event a mandatory one.

The move is blatantly a further step into Modi’s authoritarian lines and clear intervention into the authority of the states. The anti democratic move is one among the several steps taken by the government to implement their hidden agendas. The meaningful silence Modi had adopted while the senior leaders engaged in communal comments and actions had cast a shadow on the new regime. Instructions to use Hindi in all official communications and on social media and to celebrate Sanskrit week in schools and now the latest move to persuasively address the children on the “Guru Utsav”are all part of his plan.

Unlike the earlier premiers who had always inspired children to grow into great human beings and thus contribute to the progress of the nation, Modi with his ulterior motives has been working hard to accomplish his dreams. With shattered hopes, unfulfilled promises and a bleak future ahead, the nation is still awaiting progress and the much needed change.

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