At the 126th birth anniversary celebrations of Bhim Rao Ambedkar at the Lucknow’s Ambedkar Mahasabha office, Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi government announced to cancel holidays in schools on birth and death anniversaries of great personalities.
He said, “Though some may not like it but this concept of closing schools on birth and death anniversaries of great men must end. On many occasions children aren’t even aware of the purpose of the holiday defeating its whole purpose.”
Yogi Adityanath said instead of closing schools in the name of great personalities, special programme of 1-2 hours should be organised which can spread awareness about the life of these great personalities. Adityanath said that such programmes will create a feeling of respect among people about these great personalities and upcoming generations will get motivated.
He added, “Rule books say that schools should have 220 working days but the target is rarely achieved because of too many holidays. This leaves the teachers with about 130-140 working days which is not enough for students to learn.”
Actually the decision will be welcomed by the whole academic fraternity as these holidays do not add any bit towards the development of students. There has been nearly 50% increase in public holidays over the past decade with political parties largely using these holidays to make a political point.
A little before the 2017 UP polls, the Akhilesh Yadav government declared holiday on October 31, on the occasion of Sardar Patel birth anniversary; a decision many felt was taken to woo the Patels or the kurmis who constitute nearly 7% of the electorate in the state. In 2012, Akhilesh Yadav government had come under sharp attack from Mayawati after the SP government had cancelled the October 9 holiday on the death anniversary of BSP founder Kanshiram describing it as “anti-Dalit” mindset of SP leadership.
On February 16, while announcing a holiday on the birth anniversary of saint Nishadraj, the Samajwadi Party natioanl president Akhilesh Yadav had given a different take on public holidays in memories of great leaders. “Public holidays on the occasion of birth anniversary of great personalities are necessary so that communities can celebrate and remember their leaders.”
Talking about his government, Yogi said, “I want to reiterate that the BJP government is not prejudiced towards any caste or religion. In fact, we are committed to mainstream sections of society that have been left behind in the race for development.” Yogi also said that any kind of discrimination and untouchability will not be allowed under his rule.