New Delhi, Dec 15: HRD Minister Smriti Irani on Monday rubbished media reports that the Narendra Modi government has decided to keep CBSE and Navodaya schools open on Christmas to celebrate 'Good Governance Day'. The minister has claimed that no such directive has been given to any school.
As per a report published on the front page of a leading national daily, "If the Union Government has its way, CBSE schools may have to remain open on this Christmas to celebrate the birthday of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Hindu Mahasabha leader Madan Mohan Malviya by observing 'good governance day' on December 25."
Dear @timesofindia deliberate mischief by ur reporter on the front page today. All schools closed for XMas, essay competition only online.— Smriti Z Irani (@smritiirani) December 15, 2014
... Or for that matter verify d same with Secretary School Education, unless the idea was to deliberately misreport. (2/3)— Smriti Z Irani (@smritiirani) December 15, 2014
.. @timesofindia if truth is a virtue u cherish can I c a retraction tomorrow on the front page in bold (3/3)— Smriti Z Irani (@smritiirani) December 15, 2014
Meanwhile, terming the government's reported decision to keep Navodaya schools open on Christmas, as "offensive and unjustifiable" CPI(M) today demanded its withdrawal saying it was an "assault" on the religious right of Christians.
The HRD Ministry has taken "yet other offensive and unjustifiable decision to ask CBSE and other government-run schools to observe 'good governance day' on Christmas day, December 25.
Already the Navodaya schools' management have decided that the schools will remain open on December 24 and 25," the party Politburo said in a statement.
"This is a crude interference in the schedule of schools which go on Christmas vacation from December 24 and is an assault on the religious right of the Christian community," it said.
The CPI(M) demanded "withdrawal of this communally motivated instruction" and said if the government wants to observe 'good governance day' on December 25, it should do so without involving the schools.
The Government on its part has clarified that no such instruction has been issued and only an online essay competition on 'Good Governance' is being organised.