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Indian education minister requires study of Hindu scriptures, tells critics to leave country

Catholic World News - July 20, 2011

Christian and Muslim educators have joined in a call for the removal of a government minister in India’s Karnataka state who is imposing the study of Hindu scriptures in government-run schools and telling critics of the policy that they should leave the country.

A delegation of Christian and Muslim leaders met with Hans Raj Bharadwaj, the governor of Karnataka, on July 19, asking him to dismiss Vishweshara Hegde Kageri, the state’s minister for school education, for asking the critics of teaching of the Bhagavad Gita in classrooms to “quit India.”

“By making such a statement, the minister has violated his oath of office,” said Imitiaz Ahmed, chairman of the Karnataka State Minorities Educational Institutions Management Federation. Sister Genevieve, secretary of the education commission of the Karnataka Regional Bishops' Council, argued that the classroom study of the Bhagavad Gita in a secular country “violates the freedom of religion” guaranteed under Indian constitution.

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