Rajasthan government school teacher suspended for disrespecting Goddess Saraswati

Rajasthan education minister announced suspension of primary school teacher Hemlata Bairwa of a Lakdai school while addressing public.

Rajasthan education minister suspended teacher. (Image: Official X account)Rajasthan education minister suspended teacher. (Image: Official X account)

Press Trust of India | February 25, 2024 | 09:39 PM IST

KOTA: A government school teacher, posted in Rajasthan's Baran district, has been suspended for disrespecting Goddess Saraswati and hurting religious sentiments, officials on Saturday said. Primary school teacher Hemlata Bairwa was suspended on Friday following an order by Rajasthan Education Minister Madan Dilawar, they said.

"Some people give weightage to themselves so much, their 'chaal' (working style) is not yet gone and they ask what is the contribution of Goddess Saraswati in school, whoever has said so in this area, I suspend him/her," Dilawar had said addressing a public gathering during his tour in Kishanganj area in Baran district on Thursday.

A day after the minister's announcement in public, the district education (elementary) officer of Baran on Friday issued order for suspension of Prabodhak level 1 teacher, Hemlata Bairwa, posted at government primary school at Lakdai village in Kishanganj area in Baran district in view of under-consideration of disciplinary action against her. However, the official at Baran district education department claimed the suspension order was issued after initial inquiry into hurting and provoking religious sentiments against Bairwa was over.

In an initial inquiry into controversy over placement of Goddess Saraswati's picture on stage at Republic Day function in the government primary school at Lakadia in Kishanganj area, the teacher was found responsible for hurting and provoking religious sentiments of local people and on basis of the same, order for her suspension was issued on Friday, Baran district education (elementary) officer Piyush Kumar Sharma told PTI on Saturday morning. Sharma added the teacher was also ordered to register her attendance at directorate, elementary education, Bikaner, during this period.

The teacher could have averted the controversy and allowed the Republic Day function to go on smoothly, simply by agreeing with the locals and placing Goddess Saraswati's picture, but instead she hurt the sentiments and provoked the locals, the officer said. A dispute had erupted between the primary teacher and other villagers during the Republic Day function in the school on January 26 this year. Bairwa refused to put the picture of Goddess Saraswati on stage at the function along with the pictures of Mahatma Gandhi and Bhim Rao Ambedkar while the local villagers insisted on placing the picture of Goddess Saraswati on the stage.

The teacher further provoked the locals saying Goddess Saraswati contributed nothing for school and education. Earlier on Thursday, two other government teachers were suspended and an inquiry was initiated against third female teacher, all from government senior secondary school Khajuri in Sangod area of Kota district for their alleged involvement in Love Jihad, Islamic Jihad and ties with banned Islamic outfits.

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