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BJP workers allegedly perform pooja in govt-aided school; Kerala govt initiates probe

BJP workers allegedly perform pooja in govt-aided school; Kerala govt initiates probe

Photo: TNM

Kozhikode: The Kerala government launched an investigation on Wednesday, February 14, into allegations that Bharatiya Janata Party workers performed Ganapathi Homam, a Hindu ritual, inside a school in Nedumannur, Kozhikode district, for the institution's prosperity.

On Tuesday, February 13, BJP workers and school management reportedly held a pooja at Nedumannur Lower Primary (LP) School, a government-aided school.

Nedumannur residents learned about this after hearing the cacophony from the school. Shortly after, parents of several students, as well as members of the Communist Party of India (Marxist), Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI), and Student Federation of India (SFI), protested outside the school, claiming that it is a secular institution, the News Minute reported.

The police were then contacted about the event. Police arrived at approximately 9.30 p.m. “The manager and her family were there at the pooja site. They said that they were doing Ganapathi Homam for the prosperity of the school,” said Vishnu Sub Inspector (SI) of Thottilpalam police station. Following protests, the police detained people who took part in the pooja. They were released shortly after obtaining station bail.

Sarun, a CPI(M) member who participated in the protest, said, “The school is not for performing the pooja, it should be a place for learning.”

On Wednesday morning, February 14, the DYFI and SFI held a protest march to the school. Protesters requested that Gana Mohan, a teacher, be held accountable for allegedly organising and participating in the pooja.

According to the CPI(M), the school's management is controlled by BJP members. They claim that the pooja was led by the school manager Aruna's son Rudheesh and some local BJP activists.

Following the occurrence, the education minister launched an investigation. The investigation will be overseen by the Director of Public Education. The District Deputy Director of Education (DDE) has already requested a report from the school's headmistress on this event.

However, the BJP denies the allegations levelled against it.

“There is no connection between the BJP workers and this pooja. There is no need for BJP workers to go to perform a pooja. If management performs a pooja, how is that connected with the BJP? I called the BJP workers there, but they did not know about this incident at all,” VK Sajeevan, BJP Kozhikode district president said.

He claimed that CPI(M) members were creating false claims against them in order to destroy their reputations.

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