MYSURU: In a move apparently aimed at countering critics who label the BJP as “anti-Ambedkar” and “anti-Constitution”, the BS Yediyurappa government has now directed all schools to invite local experts to address students on the statute and its salient features.
The state government has directed schools to organise talks and interactions which would enlighten the students on law and their rights and responsibilities. The move comes after the government came under fire over a controversial circular on Constitution Day, which critics said, had downplayed the contributions of Ambedkar in drafting the Constitution.
This had also led to a series of protests in the state. The government later blacklisted the organisation that was assigned to prepare the brochure of the Constitution Day Abhiyan 2019-20 and withdrew the material. It also directed to destroy both hard and soft copies of the brochure.
The government which faced the heat of protests in the run-up to the by-polls to the assembly also suspended the officials involved in the controversy. Recalling a meeting chaired by Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa and Primary Education Minister Suresh Kumar, public instruction department commissioner KG Jagadeesh passed an order on January 1 making it compulsory for students of all government, aided and private schools to read out the preamble of the Constitution and the fundamental duties during their morning assemblies.
Students and teachers will repeat the preamble read out during morning prayer session. The order has been sent to deputy directors of public instruction, assistant directors (administration) and other staff including headmasters to implement the order as part of the Constitution Day programme being held from December 26 to April 14. It directs headmasters to display copies of the preamble and fundamental duties on the notice boards of the schools.
It may be recalled that BJP had made its leaders, particularly those from Dalits communities clarify on the error and the government’s commitment to organising the Constitution Day events in a grand manner. It had also appealed to organisations to call off their protests even as opposition had tried to corner the saffron party.