Parents of a government school students were up for a shock as the principal of the school, an evangelical Christian, effected an order on girl students not to wear flowers and bindi, reported leading Tamil news channel Thanti TV.
Police were summoned after the anguished parents staged an agitation outside the school, located near Nagercoil in Kanyakumari district. According to the parents, on Friday (22 June) the school’s principal Ranibai convened a students’ meeting and declared that hereafter the students should not come to school wearing bindi, flowers or with sacred threads in their hands - a Hindu practice.
The police made the principal assure the parents that she would not act against any particular religion. An enquiry into the matter was also promised by the police. The district education department officials also visited the school and conducted an investigation on Tuesday (26 June).
The same incident has been repeated in another government school in Kerala. According to Times News, a Kerala government school principal has gone a step further. While in Kanyakumari district the order was oral, here a circular was sent. The circular warned the students that they would be expelled if anyone of them were found wearing religious symbols to school like kumkum on the forehead or sacred thread on the wrists.
While such incidents have earlier been reported in schools run by Christian missionaries, the trend of Christian government school principals issuing such directives is worrying.
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