Guru pada puja controversy: Child rights panel seeks report

Representational picture

Thiruvananthapuram: A controversial ‘compulsory guru pada puja,‘ held at a government-aided girls school in Thrissur district recently, has triggered a controversy with political parties coming out against it and a child rights panel seeking a report from authorities.

The Kerala State Commission for Protection of Child Rights yeterday sought a report from the Director of Public Instructions (DPI), District Director of Education (DDE) and the principal of the school on the matter besides registering a case.

The report should be submitted within 15 days, the Commission said in a release here. The ‘guru pada puja,organised at CNN Girls Higher Secondary School in Cherppu in Thrissur as part of the ‘gurupoornima celebrations on 27 July, ran into controversy after Muslim Youth League came out against it.

They demanded an explanation from the government on whether the programme was conducted with official permission. Congress legislator V T Balram also hit out at the ritual after the photos of students paying respect to teachers by touching their feet had gone viral on social media.

Following the row, the state education department had come out with a clarification that the ritual was organised without their consent. K V Mohankumar, the DPI, said in a statement that permission was given to a private outfit to organise a programme at the school on the significance of providing care to elderly people.

The additional DPI had granted permission for the programme titled “Guru vandanam” and wanted it to be organised without affecting academic activities, it said.

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