No ‘hello’, only 'Vande Mataram' for calls, Maharashtra officials told: Report

Updated on Aug 15, 2022 07:41 AM IST

Newly-appointed Maharashtra culture minister Sudhir Mungantiwar has ordered government officials to receive phone calls with ‘Vande Mataram’ instead of a hello.

Maharashtra minister Sudhir Mungantiwar(HT FILE)
Maharashtra minister Sudhir Mungantiwar(HT FILE)

Officials in the Maharashtra government will answer their phones with ‘Vande Mataram’, not a ‘hello’ from now on, newly-appointed Maharashtra cultural affairs minister Sudhir Mungantiwar said in an official order Sunday.

“We are entering the 76th year of Independence. We are celebrating Amrit Mahotsav (of Independence). Hence, I want officials to say 'Vande Mataram' over the phone instead of hello," Mungantiwar announced, news agency PTI reported. He said a formal government order on the same will be out by August 18.

"I want all government officials in the state to say 'Vande Mataram' (while receiving phones) till January 26 next year,” he said.

The minister made the announcement in one of his first decisions, shortly after chief minister Eknath Shinde handed out portfolios in the state cabinet.

Five days after the induction of 18 ministers into his cabinet, Shinde distributed portfolios, with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) getting several key ministries, including home and finance – both to be handled by deputy chief minister Devendra Fadnavis.

In addition, Fadnavis will also handle law and judiciary, water resources, housing, energy and protocol portfolios. Another key portfolio - the revenue department - has been handed to BJP leader Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil.

Shinde, on the other hand, kept urban development and 11 other ministries with himself.

The Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena leadership was toppled by rebel Eknath Shinde, who took more than 50 party leaders with him to join hands with the BJP. Shinde and Fadnavis took oath as the chief minister and deputy CM on June 30.

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