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Make Singing of 'Vande Mataram' Must in All Schools: BJP MLA

The general body of the Shiv Sena-ruled Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) had on Thursday passed a proposal to make singing of the national song compulsory in the civic-run schools twice a week.

PTI

Updated:August 12, 2017, 7:46 AM IST
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Make Singing of 'Vande Mataram' Must in All Schools: BJP MLA
Representative image.
Mumbai: BJP chief whip in the Maharashtra Assembly Raj Purohit on Friday said the Centre should make the singing of Vande Mataram mandatory in schools in the country, drawing a flak from the Congress and the NCP which said the demand was aimed at deriving a political mileage.

The veteran MLA welcomed the Mumbai civic body's decision to make the recitation of the national song compulsory in the civic body-run schools.

The general body of the Shiv Sena-ruled Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) had on Thursday passed a proposal to make singing of the national song compulsory in the civic-run schools twice a week. The proposal has been sent to the civic commissioner for administrative nod.

Speaking in the Assembly, Purohit termed it as a good move.

"I congratulate the BMC (officially called the MCGM) for making the singing of Vande Mataram compulsory in its schools. It is a good move," he said.

Talking to reporters outside the Assembly, Purohit said the Centre should replicate this move at the national-level.

"I am also going to make a request to Union HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar to make the singing of Vande Mataram mandatory in all schools across the country," he said, adding that he has written a letter and will send it to him soon.

Maharashtra Education and Cultural Affairs Minister Vinod Tawde said that the government would ask the state chief secretary to study the directives of the Madras High Court on recital of Vande Mataram.

"We will ask the chief secretary to study the directive and then we can take a proper decision," he said, referring to the HCs recent decision to make singing Vande Mataram compulsory in all government schools, colleges and universities in Tamil Nadu at least once a week.

Slamming the BJP, NCP spokesperson Nawab Malik said the saffron party wants to derive a political mileage and polarise the society by raising such demands.

"The whole drama started only after the recent Madras High Court verdict. But they forget that the HC itself has said that singing the national song cannot be forced on people and that it should be done only if one wishes to. Making such demands in the state Assembly is like insulting the verdict of the court," Malik said.

Senior Congress leader Anant Gadgil said recital of Vande Mataram cannot be made compulsory considering the diversity of faiths in the country and their sensitivities.

"You cannot make singing the national song compulsory as certain religions may have certain interpretations about it which they would not like. So it is best left to an individuals choice," he said.

Notably, Purohit had raised the demand last month as well wherein he sought that the HC's ruling be implemented in schools and colleges of Maharashtra.

Purohit's demand was strongly opposed by All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) MLA from Mumbai Waris Pathan and Samajwadi Party MLA Abu Asim Azmi.
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