Dirty game: Separate Sections of Muslim and Hindu students in BJP controlled MCD schools

“Saare Jahan Se Achcha Hindositan Hamara, Ham Bulbule Hain Iski Yh Gulistan Hamara (Better than the entire world, is our Hindustan, We are its nightingales, and it (is) our garden abode)” seems to be losing its relevance now as the BJP started its dirty game in its Municipal School in North Delhi by assigning sections based on religion.

A section of school teachers employed by the Delhi Municipal Corporation has alleged that a primary school in Wazirabad, students have been assigned their sections based on their religious identity. Muslim and Hindu students have been put together in separate sections.

Section A of class I has all 36 Hindus whereas section B of the same class has all 36 Muslims. Similarly, A section of class II has all 47 Hindus and C section of the same class has all 40 Hindus. In this class, section B has only a mixed number of both communities i.e. 26 Muslims and 15 Hindu. Other classes have the same arrangement.

Reports published in Indian Express and National Herald show the section wise break up of students like this:

Class IA: 36 Hindus, IB: 36 Muslims

IIA: 47 Hindus, IIB: 26 Muslims and 15 Hindus, IIC: 40 Muslims

IIIA: 40 Hindus, IIIB: 23 Hindus and 11 Muslims, IIIC: 40 Muslims, IIID: 14 Hindus and 23 Muslims

IVA: 40 Hindus, IVB: 19 Hindus and 13 Muslims, IVC: 35 Muslims, IVD: 11 Hindus and 24 Muslims

VA: 45 Hindus, VB: 49 Hindus, VC: 39 Muslims and 2 Hindus, VD: 47 Muslims      

C B Singh Sehrawat, Principal Incharge of the school has denied deliberate segregation based on their religious identity. “Reshuffling of sections is standard procedure which happens in all schools. This was a management decision to try and do the best we can to see that there is peace, discipline and a good learning environment in the school. Children fought sometimes.” Indian Express quoted Sehrawat.

Sehrawat said that there are some vegetarian students in the classes and there may be differences. “Of course children at this age don’t know about religion, but they squabble over things. Some children are vegetarian, so there may be differences, and so on. We need to look after the interests of all teachers and students.”

A source in the school as reported by the newspaper said that this putting of Muslim and Hindu students in separate sections has been done after Sehrawat took charge on July 2.

“The principal was transferred on July 2, after which a teacher was put in charge until a new principal is posted. He initiated these changes and teachers were not consulted in the matter. When some teachers tried to bring it up with him, he responded with aggression and told them that it was none of their concern and that they should do their assigned jobs,” the source said.

According to the source, some teachers from the school went to the MCD zonal office in Civil Lines around 20 days ago to tell authorities about the matter, but they did not put their grievances in writing for fear of being targeted.

A senior official from the education department of the North Municipal Corporation of Delhi said, “Now that this has been brought to our notice, we will definitely inquire about it. If the allegations are true, strict action will be taken.”

Parents of students studying at the school told the newspaper that they were not aware of this reorganisation. A mother of a Class IV student denied that such segregation was taking place until her son said, “There are no Hindu boys in my class. We were together until a few months back. A good friend of mine is no longer in the same classroom.”

The mother of a Class I student, who was not aware of this development, said, “This is extremely wrong, if true. We believe all children are equal. What is going to happen if they are treated like this at the school level itself? This is very disturbing.”

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