NewDelhi/Nagpur: Pulling up Ryan International School in Delhi for forcing teachers and students to join Bharatiya Janata Party, the Delhi government has sent them a show cause notice. The school has been asked to respond within three days on the case.
Delhi’s Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia has said strict action will be taken against the school.
According to reports, teachers and students received WhatsApp messages giving them a toll-free number for BJP membership. Some teachers claim that their salary was held back until they joined BJP. The school though says the drive is voluntary.
Reports also said that the announcement to join BJP was made in the morning assembly at several branches of the school. As per Ryan International School website, there are 133 schools across the country with over 2 lakh students.
Managing director Grace Pinto confirmed the membership drive but said it was “absolutely voluntary”. “It is sad if the staff has said that they were compelled to take up BJP membership. The management never asked students and parents to join BJP,” she told national daily Times of India.
Delhi BJP Mahila Morcha president Kamaljeet Sehrawat also said the paper that Pinto is now the Morcha’s national secretary.
The membership drive is being carried out across all schools in the city which are at Vasantt Kunj, Rohini and Mayur Vihar-III. Teachers and students as well as parents have received WhatsApp messages giving them a toll-free number, 18002662020 to get enrolled as a primary member.
The Opposition has dubbed the ruling BJP government as being “anti-minority”. Concerns have been raised in Parliament in the wake of vandalisation of a church in Haryana and gangrape of a senior nun in West Bengal and communal statements made by right-wing groups.