August 4th, 2017
Several private schools in Rohtak district were forced to declare a holiday on Wednesday as their buses were requisitioned for the rally to welcome BJP national president Amit Shah in Haryana, reported The Hindustan Times.
This has happened in spite of a recent ban imposed by the state on using school buses for political rallies. The state additional chief secretary (home) Ram Niwas told the Punjab and Haryana high court in an affidavit that instruction was issued to all concerned to implement this ban. It was also stated by him that forcing managements to send their buses for rallies were against the statutory provisions of the Motor Vehicle Act, 1988. However, it was the district administration that went against the rule book in Rohtak laid forth by the government. The district administration had issued instructions to the schools to give away the buses for the aforementioned rally.
Using school buses for rallies
Schools have been found to have sent texts to students’ parents on Tuesday to inform about the holiday. Reasons like potential traffic jams and that buses will be deployed for Shah’s rally as per instructions of the administration were also cited. The Hindustan Times reported that the director of Scholars Rosary School, Ravi Gugnani said, “The administration had asked for our buses for the rally. Therefore many schools, including ours, had to declare it a holiday.”
However, when The Logical Indian tried contacting the school, they said that they will not answer our questions during working hours. Buses from other schools located in various parts of the district have also been used by BJP workers for the rally.
On the other hand, superintendent of police (SP) Pankaj Nain said that police department did not have any requisition for school buses. He also claimed that no hindrance in traffic was caused due to the rally. In 2016, a student of class 8 had written to the PM, Narendra Modi to prevent the local administration from taking over school buses for a PM’s rally organised by the BJP in Alirajpur, Madhya Pradesh.
A month back, Amit Shah had allegedly held a party meeting in Dabolim international airport, Goa. The meeting conducted by the BJP leader was attended by 2,500 party workers. The Goa Bench of Bombay High Court had issued notices to Civil Aviation Ministry against the public meeting held at Dabolim Airport, on July 1. Shah was on a two-day visit to Goa and was received by the Chief Minister of Goa Manohar Parikkar and Union Minister Sripad Naik. Amit Shah had delivered a fifteen-minute long speech on GST on a makeshift podium in the prohibited area of the airport
The Logical Indian completely condemns the usage of school buses for logistic support in organising political rallies. This adversely affects the smooth running of the education system in the country, thus posing a hindrance for the children. In spite of the state government confirming the Punjab and Haryana high court that it has banned the use of school buses, the district administration used them for political rallies. We urge the government to look into the matter and take necessary measures.