Don’t be surprised if you find school students greeting you with a smile and asking if they could pin up the Indian flag to your clothes. With a view to rekindle the spirit of Republic Day, around 25 schools from across city, have come together to spread the message of patriotism.
Impressed by the enthusiasm of the Bandra Interschool Republic Day (BIRD) team of schools that began joint celebrations of Republic Day two years ago, the Indian Navy has specially invited 15 principals from BIRD, to view the Republic Day parade to be held in Delhi on January 26.
“We were the first schools to come together for a joint celebration of Republic Day,” said Father Jude Fernandes, principal, St Stanislaus High School, Bandra. “So we have been invited specially to view the parade.”
While, the principals will be attending the parade, the students will not treat the day as just another holiday.
Dressed in their school uniforms, around 40,000 students from Classes 7 to 9 will be stationed at public places such as railway stations, bazaars, malls, junctions and petrol pumps in various parts of the city to wish citizen’s a happy Republic Day.
“We want to revive Republic Day celebrations in the city,” said Fernandes. “In other countries, such days are celebrated with much enthusiasm.”
Students from Classes 7 to 9 will be given 25 paper flags each with patriotic messages printed on it, which people can pin it on their clothes. Whereas, the students of class 1 to 4 will be given 10 flags each to distribute among members of their own society. The students are expected to reach out to 2.5 lakh citizens.
“We will even train students on talking to strangers and how to get their point across without annoying anyone,” added Fernandes.
Students will participate in the activity after flag hoisting is done in their respective schools. Participating schools include St Andrew’s, Bandra, Podar International School (SSC), Santacruz, IES Manik Vidyamandir Bandra, Sacred Heart Boys School, Santacruz, St Teresa’s School, Khar, among others. St Elias School, Khar said that they will also hold an awareness rally around the school. While, Anjuman-e-Islam’s MIJ Girls High School, Bandra said it will spread the message to its branches across the city.