Bihar govt lands in trouble over 'Surya Namaskar'

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A Bihar government directive to all schools at    district headquarters to     ensure full attendance during a “Surya Namaskar” programme on Monday     has got mired in a         controversy.

Many Muslim organisations objected to the education department directive for a function which was held to mark the 150th birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda by the Shard Shati Samaroh Samiti.

The issue echoed in the     Assembly, too, when Rashtriya Janata Dal members, mostly Muslims,     charged the Nitish Kumar government with acting at the behest of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh and imposing certain conditions which made students from the minority community uncomfortable.

Soon after, the government went into a damage-control mode and amended its earlier directive and made it clear that “Surya Namaskar” would be optional and not compulsory in government schools.

Issuing a fresh circular, the education department  has asked all district education officers to clarify that “attendance of students for ‘Surya Namaskar’ will be optional on Monday.” “I have issued a circular to clarify that ‘Surya Namaskar’ is not compulsory,” said Secondary Education Director K K Sinha.

Following the clarification by the government, the Samiti organised group “Surya Namaskar” at Moinul Haq Stadium here on Monday where nearly 25,000 students from different schools participated.

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