Published: 01st August 2022
Kanpur: Protest at school for reciting Islamic verse during assembly, police orders shelving of decade-long practice
The school says it includes verses from various religions during the morning assembly. The protesting Hindu extremist groups and some parents said that it was 'forcing religion on children'
The recital of the 'Kalima', which is a holy verse in Islam, in a school in Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh, drew the ire of Hindu extremist groups and a few parents. A demonstration was held at the school and a complaint was filed with the police, complaining about "forcing religion on children".
According to a report by IANS, the Florets School, which is at the centre of this controversy, follows the practice of reciting holy verses from various religions, including the Gayatri Mantra, the Gurubani, the Kalima and other religious verses in the morning assembly.
School principal Sumit Makhija told reporters on Monday, August 1, "There is surely no intention of promoting any one religion. It has been a practice at this school for years. The school diary has verses from all major religions including Hinduism, Sikhism, Christianity and Islam written in the diary. Reciting verses was started as a practice to give equal respect to all religions. Now, all of a sudden, a group of Hindu radicals and some parents have opposed it."
After the complaint was filed, the police asked the school to stop this practice, which the school says has been in place for about a decade now. The principal has confirmed that the school will only recite the national anthem at the morning assembly. School authorities also clarified that they will speak directly about the matter to concerned parents.