New Delhi: 'National Integration Week' will be observed from November 19 with a view to fostering and reinforcing the spirit of communal harmony across the country amidst ongoing debate over the issue of intolerance.
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh has asked the central and state governments to organise and celebrate the 'Qaumi Ekta Week' so that the message of communal harmony and national integration could reach out to every part of the country and society.
"This occasion provides an opportunity to reaffirm age old traditions and faith in the values of tolerance, co-existence and brotherhood in a multi-cultural and multi-religious society.
"The observation of 'Qaumi Ekta Week' will also help to highlight the inherent strength and resilience of our nation to withstand actual and potential threats to the eclectic and secular fabric of our country, and nurture a spirit of communal harmony in its widest sense," the Home Ministry today said in a press release.
With a view to fostering and reinforcing the spirit of communal harmony, national integration and pride in vibrant, composite culture and nationhood, the 'Qaumi Ekta Week' (National Integration Week) will be observed all over the country, from the November 19-25.
The first day of the week will be observed as 'National Integration Day' and programmes like meetings, symposia and seminars would be organised to emphasise the themes of secularism, anti-communalism and non-violence.
November 20 will be observed as "Welfare of Minorities Day" and items of the 15-point programme are emphasised on this day, it said. "November 21 will be observed as 'Linguistic Harmony Day'.
Programmes like special literary functions and Kavi Sammelans will be organised to enable people of each region to appreciate the linguistic heritage of other parts of India," the release said.
November 22 will be observed as "Weaker Sections Day" and meetings and rallies would be organised to highlight programmes under various Governments which help SCs/STs and weaker sections with particular emphasis on the distribution of surplus land to landless labourers.
Whereas November 23 would be observed as "Cultural Unity Day" and functions presenting the Indian tradition of unity in diversity and promoting cultural conservation and integration would be organised, it said.
The second last day of the week will be observed as "Women's Day" during which importance of Women in Indian society and their role in development of nation-building would be highlighted.
The last day of the week will be observed as "Conservation Day", and meetings and functions would organised to emphasise the growing need for awareness and action to conserve the environment.
The National Foundation for Communal Harmony (NFCH), an autonomous organisation with the Ministry of Home Affairs, would also organises Communal Harmony Campaign coinciding with the "Qaumi Ekta Week" and observes the "Communal Harmony Flag Day" on November 25.
The foundation promotes communal harmony and strengthens national integration. It also provides financial assistance for relief and rehabilitation of children rendered orphan or destitute in communal, caste, ethnic or terrorist violence.