NEW DELHI: A recent Jammu and Kashmir government order seeking copies of Urdu versions of Ramayana and Bhagavad Gita to be made available at schools, colleges and libraries across the state has triggered a fresh row.
According to reports, National Conference leader and state's former chief minister Omar Abdullah has taken exception to the order and questioned the selective approach of the state government.
In a tweet, Abdullah also accused the J&K government of ignoring other religions.
“Why just the Gita & Ramayana? If religious texts are to be placed in schools, colleges & government libraries (and I’m not convinced that they need/should be) then why is it being done selectively? Why are other religions being ignored? (sic),” Omar tweeted.
Why just the Gita & Ramayana? If religious texts are to be placed in schools, collages & government libraries (and I’m not convinced that they need/should be) then why is it being done selectively? Why are other religions being ignored? pic.twitter.com/UqxMG0NpMJ
— Omar Abdullah (@OmarAbdullah) October 22, 2018
The government order states that the decision was taken during a meeting chaired by Governor Satya Pal Malik’s advisor on October 22.
"The School Education Department, Higher Education Department, Director Colleges, Director, Libraries and Culture Department will consider purchasing sufficient number of copies each of Urdu version of "Shrimad Bhagwat-Geeta" and "Koshur Ramayana", authored by Sarwanand Premi for making these available in Schools/Colleges and public libraries etc of the State," the order said.
However, GN Itoo, Director, School Education Kashmir (DSEK), was quoted as saying by media reports that he hadn’t received the letter of the state government order.
“I will check it with the department,” he added.