Bhopal: Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath on Thursday sought to end the controversy over the temporary discontinuation of the practice of the singing of Vande Mataram at Secretariat once and for all.
Announcing his decision, as he had promised, Nath said, “At 10.45 AM on the first working day of every month, police band will play the tunes which encourage patriotic feelings during their march from Shaurya Samarak to Vallabh Bhawan in Bhopal. On arrival at the bhawan, the national anthem and Vande Mataram will be sung.”
The state government’s decision to stop the tradition of singing Vande Mataram at the Secretariat on the first day of every month drew criticism from all quarters. Reacting, Nath had said on Wednesday said that he would give a “new look” to the national song.
“It is wrong to do politics on Vande Mataram. They do politics on everything from Ram temple to Vande Mataram. I condemn this. I will give a new ‘roop’ (look) to Vande Mataram,” he said.
The song was not sung on Tuesday, the first working day of January, at the state secretariat following which the opposition BJP attacked Chief Minister Kamal Nath, seeking to know if it was done on his direction. Nath, amid all the criticism, had continued to insist that the discontinuation was only temporary and the practice would be restored in a new form.
Meanwhile, the criticism was severe and came from all quarters. Terming it move akin to ‘treason’, BJP president Amit Shah even asked Congress chief Rahul Gandhi if the decision was taken at his behest. “The decision of the Congress government in MP to block the recital of ‘Vande Mataram’ is unfortunate and shameful. ‘Vande Mataram’ is not just a song but is the symbol of India’s freedom movement as well as an inspiration to every Indian,” Shah said in a Facebook post.