Catholic school seeks police protection in Madhya Pradesh
Indore: A Catholic school in Central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh has sought police protection following threat from the right wing Hindu activists over an alleged patriotic chant row.
St Joseph Convent School, Namli, Ratlam, district came under attack from right wing Hindu group activists who accused the school management of rusticating 20 students for allegedly reciting the patriotic slogan “Bharat Mata Ki Jai”.
The school is run by the sisters of St. Joseph of Chambery (Tanmaya Province). School management and Church leaders have opposed the allegation as “absolutely baseless and false propaganda” to defame the Christian school.
The Christian schools, of late has become the target of right wing Hindu groups that tried to push through with their Hindu religious practices such as “aarti to Bharat Mata” among other things in the name of patriotism.
“The charge is totally baseless and false” says Father Maria Stephen, the public relation officer (PRO) of the Catholic Church in Madhya Pradesh.
“The school has not rusticated anyone”, he told Matters India. He, however, maintained that some students who tried make a mockery of national song, were corrected.
The right wining Hindu groups, official sources said now distorted it and spread wrong messages against the school in the villages and asked people to join their protest on Monday.
The right wing organizations have called for a protest against the school and urged the people to joint it in large numbers.
Bajrang Dal activist Rajesh Parihar said that their religious heads will protest the anti-national act of the Christian school.
He also said the organization has called for voluntarily bandh in the town. “We are certainly going to protest and seek the derecognisation of the school,” he said.
The superintendent of police (SP) Amit Singh told media outlets that initial investigation suggested that the school was not at fault. However, he added that a sub divisional magistrate (SDM) and Sub Divisional Officer of Police (SDOP) are investigating the matter thoroughly.
Meanwhile, the nuns (teachers) at the school have petitioned the police seeking their protection in the wake of the threat from the Hindu group against the school. SP admitted that the teachers have sought protection from the police.