"Hunter green" school uniforms lead to political slugfest in Odisha

BJP MLA Suryabanshi Suraj said that this was an attempt to politicise the education system
Image for representational purpose only | (Pic: Express)
Image for representational purpose only | (Pic: Express)

The introduction of new "hunter green" school uniforms for government high school students in Odisha has sparked a political row between the ruling BJD and the opposition BJP. The latter questioned the choice of the colour of the uniforms, which resembles the colour of the ruling party.

BJP MLA from Dhamnagar Suryabanshi Suraj on Wednesday, July 12, said that this was an attempt to politicise the education system. "It is a matter of concern that the state government is trying to influence the students towards BJD ideology. Change of colour of school uniform to green is being done after painting all schools and colleges green under 5T school transformation programme," the MLA tweeted, as mentioned in a report by The New Indian Express.

"The state government has issued an advisory on changing the uniform of high school students, which is not acceptable," he added. According to the advisory, the uniform colour of Classes IX and X students of all government and aided schools in the state were being changed to "hunter green" from the earlier white and dark blue.

"The Centre has been providing financial assistance of Rs 240 crore to Odisha every year under the Samagra Shiksha scheme for the distribution of uniforms to school students. On what basis has the state government rechristened the scheme as Mukhya Mantri Paridhan Yojana and claimed it as its own scheme?" Suraj questioned.

"Changing the colour of the uniform is not enough. Instead, the state government should give due attention to the improvement of quality education, supply of nutritious food to children and better health of the students," the MLA said further. 

Countering this diatribe, BJD Spokesperson Goutam Buddha Das asked Suraj to desist from indulging in hate politics over the uniforms of school children. "He should be ashamed of doing negative politics over the colour of school uniforms as there are many other issues. The country's National Flag also has green colour in it as it denotes progress," Das said.

He added that those who included the green colour in the National Flag have done so after much thinking, but Suraj was not able to understand, as he was obsessed with politics, as per TNIE.

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