Schools in Maharashtra will observe ‘Marathi Bhasha Gaurav Din’ on February 27, the birth anniversary of poet Kusumagraj. The state school education department has asked schools to hold book fairs and writer forums to celebrate the day. But schools might refrain from organising all this as they said they will have their hands full with exams and election duties for teachers on that day.
Marathi laureate and famous poet VV Shirwadkar, popularly known by his pen name, Kusumagraj, was a Jnanpith award winner, which is considered as the highest literary honour in India.
A recent circular issued by the department states that Kusumagraj “contributed to Maharashtra’s cultural heritage and took great efforts to develop the Marathi language”. For this reason, schools, government offices and private institutions have been asked to pay him a fitting tribute.
This is the third year in a row when the department has asked schools to celebrate the day, officials said it has met with a lukewarm response from most private unaided schools. “We hope this year schools will show more enthusiasm,” said BB Chavan, deputy director of education, Mumbai region.
Principals said they are unable to hold big events on February 27 as they are busy preparing for upcoming board and school exams. “We have no problems in honouring Kusumagraj but we are in the midst of conducting oral and practical exams for Class 10 students then,” said Uday Nare, teacher from Hansraj Morarji Public School, Andheri.
The department has suggested varied creative activities that can be conducted in schools to teach students importance of Marathi. “The programmes should convey information on Marathi, its history and status in the society,” states the circular.