Uttar Pradesh plans to introduce English in government schools from nursery instead of Class 6 as part of a broader overhaul of the state’s education system that will blend nationalist and modern curricula, chief minister Yogi Adityanath has said.
In an interview to online portal Khabare.com, the 44-year-old leader said he had asked officials to prepare an education roadmap to enrol more students in schools, check cheating in examinations and introduce foreign language options from class 10.
“The traditional and the modern should blend. We should have an education system which promotes nationalism but is modern,” he told the website.
The controversial leader – who heads an influential Hindu sect in eastern Uttar Pradesh – has taken charge roughly two weeks ago but has already hogged headlines for anti-romeo squads, groups of policemen and women who patrol public spaces in cities and help thwart harassment. But many say they are little more than a moral policing gang that violate privacy.
But the CM defended the steps, saying there was no discrimination or harassment. “We are not taking decisions based on faces of people… so, no one who is following the law should worry…if people are sitting in parks, they are not committing any crime,” he told the portal.
Adityanath – a surprise CM pick that apparently stumped many in the party – told the web portal that he was in the dark about his nomination and was initially on a parliamentary delegation for Port of Spain but was asked to stay back by the prime minister .
“On March 17, I got a call from Amit Shah asking me where I am. When I told him that I was in Gorakhpur, he asked me to come over to Delhi. I told him that the last train from Gorakhpur had already left. He sent a chartered flight on the morning of 18th. I reached his home where I was told that I should take up the job of chief minister.”
He said he asked for the two deputy chief ministers – Keshav Prasad Maurya and Dinesh Sharma – because he didn’t have administrative experience. “And I intend to travel across the state. Someone would be required in the state capital.”
He also leaned against large-scale bureaucratic rejigs – a normal with political changes in India – and said there were officers who were prevented from working. “Transfers are no solution. They don’t mark any change.”
The new CM also blamed the previous Samajwadi Party government for not following the Supreme Court’s orders on banning liquor stores and said he was opening to cancelling licences.