SRINAGAR: Jammu and Kashmir Education Minister Altaf Bukhari Saturday hit out at Army Chief General Bipin Rawat for his remarks about State’s education system saying the well-decorated officer should not give sermons on issues that are not in his constitutional mandate and instead focus on his job.
“Army chief should confine his role to security related issues and not make unnecessary comments beyond his constitutional mandate and domain,” Bukhari told reporters on sidelines of a function at a school, here today.
He said those giving sermons should do their duties in a more professional manner to ease the sufferings of a common man in J&K.
The Education Minister was reacting to statement of General Rawat in which he had said that J&K education system needs to be revamped.
Army chief had said each classroom in government schools in J&K has a separate map of the state besides that of India which sowed the seeds of thought of some kind of "separate identity" among the children.
While defending two flags in classrooms, J&K Education minister said the State has two flags and map because it has its own constitution due to Article 370, grants special status to the State. “Every school in a state has a state map because you explain it to the students”.
Maintaining that State’s education system is fine, he said, “There is no shortcomings in J&K’s education system and it was not producing extremists.
Our children are not going towards radicalisation”.
“I think army chief did not mean it. India is a democratic country and army does not have control on anything and army chief fully knows it,” he said.
The education minister General Rawat to do his own work. “His job is to guard the borders and if borders are protected the incidents of violence in the State will come down”.
He said army chief is a “well-decorated officer” and there is no doubt on his professionalism but since he is not an educationist, he should not give sermons on education.
“I don’t think any society will accept sermons on education from non-academicians. I would welcome sermons from academicians on how to run the education system. Education is subject on State list and this is not on the concurrent list and falls well within the domain of the State,” the minister said.
Bukhari further said they know how to run the State’s education system. “The constitution of India has given different roles to different people. I would be glad if Army does what they are supposed to do and leave us to do what we are supposed to do.”
Trespassing the defined mandates, he said, tantamount to committing brazen injustice with duties assigned to people by the constitution. “Army has its own role and let them play the same with utmost responsibility”.
Asserting that he won’t take sermons from anybody, Bukhari said, “Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti is my boss. If she finds any fault in the education system, we will review it.”
“She is the only one whose sermons we will follow. If she finds any reasons for the improvement in the system, she can pinpoint and order for corrective measures as well,” added J&K’s Education Minister.