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Congress slams govt move to distribute literature on Upadhayay in educational institutions, libraries

The Congress has criticised the BJP government for “forcing” libraries of state-run educational institutions to subscribe literature on BJP icon Deen Dayal Upadhyay in “pursuance of party chief Amit shah’s diktat”

dehradun Updated: Mar 10, 2018 21:47 IST
Deep Joshi
Deep Joshi
Hindustan Times
A fund of ₹60 lakh was released by the state government for purchase of literature on Deen Dayal Upadhaya, an official says.(HT File)

The Congress has criticised the BJP government for “forcing” libraries of state-run educational institutions to subscribe to literature on BJP icon Deen Dayal Upadhyay in “pursuance of party chief Amit shah’s diktat”, alleging that the move was aimed to force the saffron ideology on the youth.

“This (BJP) government’s decision to force state-run libraries and educational institutions to subscribe to literature on its party icon (Upadhyay) is a clear conspiracy to force the saffron ideology on the youth,” Mathura Dutt Joshi, the state Congress’s chief spokesperson alleged.

“Besides, the way huge funds were wasted by this government just to purchase the saffron literature to follow the BJP chief’s diktat is highly condemnable,” he said. “It is also a huge burden on the state’s already dwindling financial resources.”

State BJP chief Ajay Bhatt refused to comment on the issue stating that he had no knowledge about the whole issue.

Director General, Information, Pankaj Kumar Pandey confirmed that a fund of ₹60 lakh was released by the state government for purchase of literature on BJP icon Deen Dayal Upadhaya.

The official admitted that the fund was released following chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat’s approval. “The literature (relating to BJP icon Upadhaya) thus purchased was recently distributed among state run libraries of regional universities and colleges affiliated to them,” he said, adding all related books were also distributed among the state run institutions and public libraries.

Pandey strongly defended the state government’s move stating that the literature on Upadhayay “can’t be branded” as the BJP literature. “Can you have literature on the late prime minister Indira Gandhi branded as a Congress literature?” he said adding had the BJP published the literature on Upadhyaya it could have been categorised as the saffron literature. Pandey denied that the literature on the BJP icon was published by the saffron party.

He also strongly denied that purchasing literature relating to Upadhyay was a burden on the state’s meager financial resources. “Should we now stop purchasing books for libraries because the state has meager financial resources?” Pandey remarked. “Going by that logic state run educational institutions and government departments should also stop purchasing even newspapers.”

Party insiders said Shah had asked all the BJP ruled states including Uttarakhand to distribute the literature on the party ideologue (Upadhyaya). “Such directions were issued after the party found no takers for the related books at the international book festival held in Delhi recently”, a BJP leader familiar with the issue said.

First Published: Mar 10, 2018 21:47 IST