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Hijab row: High schools reopen in Karnataka

Karnataka: Move to paint classrooms saffron questioned

November 14, 2022

Karnataka government’s decision to paint classrooms in saffron color has become a bone of contention with the opposition parties questioning the motive behind it.

Under the ambitious ‘Viveka’ scheme, which chief minister Basavaraj Bommai launched in Hubballi on Monday to commemorate Children’s Day, government schools and PU colleges are said to be given a facelift with an estimated Rs 46.40 crores set aside for the same.

‘Viveka’ also proposes to construct 7,601 classrooms in the state government run schools, the foundation laying of which was done by the chief minister. Under the same, Karnataka’s minister for school education and literacy, BC Nagesh said that schools would be painted uniformly in a saffron color. This invoked controversy.  

Bommai, however, defended the government’s move stating that the scheme was named after Swami Vivekananda and hence the choice to paint it from the color he donned.

“What is wrong to have saffron color? There’s saffron color in the (national) tricolor. Swami Vivekananda himself used to wear saffron robe”. The opposition are interested in comprehensive development of education,” Bommai replied. He added that it has become a trend to create controversy on any progressive changes made.

“Naming schools after Swami Vivekananda will help students draw inspiration from him and a good environment will be created in schools,” the Chief Minister opined.

School Education Minister B C Nagesh added that if architects recommend to the government that saffron color looks good in such classrooms, it will be considered. “Some people are allergic to saffron,” he added, “there is saffron colour in their (party) flag. Why keep it? Remove it.”

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