Non-Cong states against PM’s letter to students | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Non-Cong states against PM’s letter to students

delhi Updated: Oct 26, 2011 00:23 IST
Chetan Chauhan
Chetan Chauhan
Hindustan Times
Students

Students across several non-UPA ruled states will witness politics over education on Children's Day, November 14, when the school headmasters will read a note by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and another by the state chief minister in the morning assembly.

The HRD ministry had decided to mail a speech by PM Singh to over 13 lakh elementary schools all over the country to create awareness about Right To Education (RTE).

The PM's speech, Siksha Ka Haq (right to education), is intended to encourage children, parents and 60 lakh teachers in elementary schools to make more efforts to realise the right to education.

The HRD ministry wants to make all schools RTE compliant by March 2013, a daunting task considering the fund constraints and a huge shortage of teachers.

But, the non-Congress ruled states are not enthused and have described the PM's letter as politically-motivated.

"School education is a state subject and we were not consulted before taking a decision," said Madhya Pradesh chief minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan, during the National Development Council meeting. He would be writing to school children of his state on importance of education and efforts taken by the state government to promote school education.

Gujarat, another BJP ruled states, has also decided that CM Narendra Modi would be sending a letter addressed to children on Children's Day. "Education cannot be used for politics," a state government official said, reiterating that the HRD ministry cannot take a unilateral decision.

Punjab, which is going to polls early next year, has also told the HRD ministry that CM Prakash Singh Badal will also be sending a message for school children.

Sources said other non-Congress ruled states may follow suit.

To have maximum impact, the HRD ministry had decided to mail the PM's speeches in regional languages. A decision in this regard was announced at a recent meeting of state education ministers with HRD minister Kapil Sibal to create awareness about RTE.