Thursday, Oct 06, 2022
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teacher’s day: modi’s address

September 5, Modi Divas?

It’s a day for teachers and their students, why should the PM interpose himself?

September 5, Modi Divas?
Sanjay Rawat
September 5, Modi Divas?
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

Even Barack Obama did it. Address schoolchildren in warm, avuncular tones in a speech telecast on a cable TV station and the White House website. Back in September 2009, the US president gave his ‘Back to the School’ speech at Wakefield High School, Arl­ing­ton, Virginia. It was exa­ctly what you’d have expected: an Obam­aesque mixture of light-hearted banter, childhood reminiscence and high-min­ded didacticism. But not everyone was charmed. A volley of criticism came his way—mostly accusing him of “indoctrination”. “If he wants to talk governmental affairs, great. But I don’t want the President trying to raise my kids,” wrote an irate blogger.

Narendra Modi could match Obama in any elocution contest, but this isn’t really about that. Till last year, September 5 was about felicitating your teachers—a rare day off for them. In a reversal of roles, students got a taste of the role and persp­ective of teachers through some half-ser­ious  playacting. It was a day of fun, a preserve of teachers and their wards.

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