Gujarat officer organises Elocution competition on ‘My Idol Nathuram Godse’, Suspended

My Idol Nathuram Godse: A probationary youth development officer from Gujarat’s Valsad district organized an elocution competition for school students on the topic ‘My Idol Nathuram Godse’. There was a lot of controversy regarding the matter, after which the officer has been suspended. The matter came to the fore on Wednesday when local newspapers in Valsad district published reports claiming that a girl student had won a speech competition on the topic ‘My Idol Nathuram Godse’.

After assuring action by Harsh Sanghvi, Minister of State for Sports, Youth and Cultural Activities, the Probationary Class-2 District Youth Development Officer Mitaben Gawli of Valsad district was immediately suspended. Sanghvi said in Gandhinagar, ‘I have ordered an inquiry into the incident. We will take action against the culprits. Within a few hours an order to suspend Gawli was issued.

It has been said in the order that the officer should have taken extra care in selecting the subject for the speech competition organized by the Valsad office of the department in a private school on February 14. The competition was open to primary school students in the age group of 11 to 13 years from all over Valsad district. The suspension order said, “In the district level competition held on February 14, school children were given three subjects to choose from. One of the themes given by Gawli was ‘My Idol Nathuram Godse’. Apart from this, there were two other topics like ‘I only like birds that fly in the sky’ and ‘I will be a scientist but will not go to America.’

In the suspension order issued by Deepak Patel, Deputy Secretary of the department, it has been said that when the department sought information from Valsad District Primary Education Officer BD Bariya, he told the department that Gawli had selected these subjects and about the speech competition. I had written a letter to the primary schools to inform. After the controversy started, the private school management clarified that it had only hosted the event and did not organize it.

Archana Desai, administrator of Kusum Vidyalaya said, “We had only provided our school premises to the department for organizing this competition. Not only the subject, even the decision makers for the competition were selected by the Valsad district office.

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