Haryana mulls teaching Gita in schools, colleges

Haryana mulls teaching Gita in schools, colleges

Move may not go down well with other communities

The BJP government in Haryana led by RSS ideologue and first-time Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar is mulling introduction of the teachings of the Hindu scripture Gita in schools and colleges in the state.

The plan has the strong patronage of Haryana Education Minister Ram Bilas Sharma. The decision may not be received well by believers of other religions in Hindu-dominated Haryana.

An expert team is likely to be set up soon to draw out a workable framework to disseminate the teachings enshrined in the Gita in schools and institutions of higher leaning.

Haryana BJP spokesperson Virender Chauhan told Deccan Herald that the plan was very much afloat and would help students build a strong foundation for a better life ahead.
He said the knowledge of the Gita was already a part of learning in many institutions across the globe.

“Haryana is the place where the epic battle of Mahabharata was fought and what better place to introduce the teachings of the Gita,” he said, adding that the Gita was narrated by Lord Krishna to his disciple Arjun in this part of the planet. 

Chauhan said it was unlikely that the Hindu scripture would be made mandatory learning.
“The format will be worked out. The idea is to broadcast the goodness of the book. It is only appropriate that students are made aware of the message given in the scripture. Gita is about a way of life beyond any one religion,” he said.

Those opposed to the idea feel the move is another progression of the Hindutva agenda of the saffron party, especially given the strong RSS lineage of Chief Minister Khattar.

The move comes close on the heels of the ‘demand’ made by Union External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj to declare the Bhagavad Gita as a ‘national scripture’.

Sushma Swaraj, flanked by Khattar, yoga guru Ramdev and others, said this at an event held in New Delhi early last month to celebrate the Gita Mahotsav commemorating 5151 years of the holy book.

She had said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had gifted the Gita to the US President Barack Obama, which meant that it had already received the honour of a national scripture.

Many parliamentarians had denounced the move saying it was part of “a sinister design to subvert the secular fibre of the country”.
DH News Service