Gandhi Jayanti 2019: A million students read Gandhi, create world record
To inculcate a reading habit among students, UP governor Anandiben Patel led the ‘Padhe Lucknow, Badhe Lucknow’ campaign, a storybook reading session here on Tuesday.
The governor sat along with the students and read a storybook in a ‘lead by example’ move for others to follow.
The district administration, meanwhile, claimed that approximately one million students from Class 6 to university level, simultaneously read books in more than 1,919 educational institutions in state capital.
The campaign, which Lucknow hosted for the first time, also made it to the World Book of Records on the eve of Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary.
Patel reached Government Inter College, Nishatganj in the morning and sat on a chair, like other students, and got engrossed in reading a book. The students were pleasantly surprised to see her sitting in the classroom on a chair like theirs.
After the reading session, she interacted with some of the students and inquired about what they read, said college principal Kamlesh Kumari.
As part of the programme’s theme, the students mostly read books on the life of Mahatma Gandhi or the freedom struggle. But, they had the option of reading other material too during the session from 11am to 11:45am.
The campaign was initiated by Patel and coordinated by University of Lucknow, read a tweet of Lucknow University.
The response was overwhelming and students enjoyed every bit of it. Shivanjli Chaturvedi, BA second year student at Isabella Thoburn College, said, “It was an enriching experience. I got to learn a lot about Gandhiji’s life and his views on women’s condition during that time.”
“I knew who the Father of the Nation was, but I never really knew him. And if I were to take anything from today’s enlightened session, it would be that violence isn’t just the physical act, but also any action or inaction that goes against the very nature of humanity,” said Pranjali Hajela, B Com final year student.
During the session, the students were told to switch off their mobile phones and to maintain silence, a degree college principal said.
Students of St Joseph College, Sitapur Road branch, learnt the practices and sayings of Gandhi Ji by reading topics like Yug Purush – Mahatma Gandhi Adarsh Samaaj ka Charitra and Saadgi.
Students of all branches of SKD Academy also participated in the book reading session, said its director Manish Singh.
The governor also expressed concern that in today’s ‘machine era’, the new generation students had lost interest in reading books. “They were more drawn to mobile phones, TV, Internet and other activities, which resulted in decline in moral values,” she said.
Students enrolled in LU, degree colleges, technical educational institutions, Dr Shakuntala Misra University, Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar University, King George’s Medical University, all schools (from class 6–12), Madarsa Board, Ashram Board and Rashtriya Sanskrit Sansthan were also part of this campaign.
Five teams from the World Book of Records visited a few institutions that participated in this event. Sanjay Panjwani and Pradeep Mishra were adjudicators from World Book of Records.