Sunday 25 August 2019

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Pak soldiers' humanity sparks controversy

 

Thanks to the sangh parivar, a new controversy of nationalism over Kargil war has been raked up in Goa for portraying humanism among Pakistani soldiers while dealing with the injured Indian soldier, who is left behind on the war front.

Dharmanand Kholkar, a senior teacher, who was responsible in mentioning such an incident in a Konkani question paper of SSC preliminary examination, had to face wrath of the sangh parivar, especially the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad activists.

Describing such an act as anti-national, a group of around 60 sangh parivar activists manhandled Kholkar and painted his face black by trespassing into the high school building, situated in Marcel village, around 15 kms away from Panaji, almost a fortnight late after the question paper was released for the exam held on 19 January.

A question, providing an outline to complete a short story, states that one Indian soldier falls down with a bullet and faints while his colleagues run away. The enemies give him water to drink when he recovers and also take him to the hospital for medical treatment. When the Indian soldier asks why he was not killed, the Pak soldiers tell him that all of us are human beings.

"It is shameful to portray Pak soldiers humane when they have tortured Indian soldiers, while projecting our brave soldiers as cowards. Such a teacher should be expelled immediately", feels Govind Parvatkar, the local BJP secretary.

"I had no other intention than inculcating universal brotherhood among the students through this", clarifies Kholkar. Producing a similar text mentioned in the 1996 SSC examination paper based on Indo-China war, he says the only change he made was to mention the recent Indo-Pak war at Kargil instead.

The Goa Headmasters' Association, who produces this paper in Konkani every year, has apologised for hurting public sentiments on the issue while also clarifying that neither the concerned teacher nor the association had any kind of anti-national intention behind it.

"The question reflects perverseness of mind rather than human values. It is worth condemning", feels Prof Bhushan Bhave, the ABVP leader. But Kholkar strongly suspects a conspiracy raked up on the background of Zilla Panchayat elections scheduled for 6 February, to gain political mileage out of it.

The sangh parivar had resorted to similar kind of action way back in 1988, when then Goa Pradesh Congress Committee president Shantaram Naik had make a statement against prime minister Atel Bihari Vajpayee.

Most of the local newspapers have however condemned the ABVP's act of painting Kholkar's face black by getting into the school building. In spite of filing a police complaint on 1 February soon after the incident took place, none of the student activists have been arrested yet.

The tourist state is presently ruled by a coalition government, run jointly by a break away group led by chief minister Francisco Sardinha and the BJP.






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