Posted On Saturday, November 23, 2013 at 11:30:49 AM
|Officials say the event would not clash with examinations
After assigning its ministers and senior bureaucrats the task of collecting iron from across the country for Sardar Patel’s proposed statue near the Narmada dam, the State government has chalked out a plan to involve more than 10 lakh college students from across the state in the project.
According to an education department circular issued by Principal Secretary AM Tiwari, a week-long fest will be held in all the universities of the state on the theme of unity to resonate with the Rs 2063-crore ‘Statue of Unity’ project.
The students will be encouraged to take the pledge to promote national unity during the fest. The programme will also have a ‘run for unity’ in every taluka of the state for the students. “The government has decided that in order to involve the college, university and technical institution students, events such as debate, essay writing, and painting on the theme of unity will be held,” said event coordinator Kamlesh Joshipura. Some of the events will be held at the national level, he added.
Dr Mukul Shah, in-charge vice chancellor, said, “The programme is aimed at inculcating the principles of Sardar Patel who advocated equality in society. We will soon declare a schedule of the programme.”
While welcoming the concept, a college principal expressed apprehension of the clash with examinations. “The event will clash with exams in school and colleges. This will disrupt students’ studies. There was no significant event on Sardar’s birth anniversary. Surprisingly the event will last for a week,” said the principal requesting anonymity.
The education department has sought the examination routine of all universities to work out the dates for the event. Going by the schedule, the event is likely to take place in the first or the second week of December. Joshipura said, “Most of the colleges have scheduled their examination in December. We had held a meeting with vice chancellors of all universities and asked them to send us their time-tables.”
The department has also approached the National Service Scheme, National Cadet Corps and Mahila Samakhya to participate in the event.
According to sources, the event is being planned in such a way that at least one cabinet minister can attend it throughout the week. “On the last day, the chief minister might also be present at the event,” sources added.
Congress has termed the exercise as yet another propaganda by the State. Party spokesman Manish Doshi said, “Dedicating the Statue of Unity to Sardar Patel won’t be a tribute to him.
Using the funds for the benefit of students by giving scholarships and recruiting adequate teachers will be the true tribute to the Iron Man.
The statue is for political gain and not a commemoration of Sardar’s principles which stress on quality education.” The State needs to first regularise the process of admission and examinations in the interest of students, Doshi said.