Rajasthan becomes the first state to have a full-fledged department of peace and non-violence
The department of peace and non-violence in coordination with the education department will formulate a policy on imparting Gandhian studies in both schools and in colleges
Rajasthan is the first state in the country to have a full-fledged and independent department of peace and non-violence. There existed a directorate under the department of art and culture which was set up by the Ashok Gehlot government to propagate Gandhian ideals and values, but now Governor Kalraj Mishra has granted his approval to set up an independent department of peace and non-violence.
“We have chosen the Mahatma Gandhi Jayanti day for announcing the setting up of the department to effectively propagate the ideas of the father of the nation’s noble objectives and principles of harmony and pacification. We had a directorate for peace and non-violence under the art and culture department, but my government wanted to empower a department with its own budget and objectives, thus a new department was set up” said Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot.
The financial arrangement will be ensured by preparing a detailed plan for such programmes. Also, proposals related to peace and non-violence, communal harmony, social equality, universal brotherhood, and social reforms based on the ideas and principles of Mahatma Gandhi will be prepared and appropriate steps will be taken by the department for their implementation, the statement issued by the Rajasthan government said.
Various exhibitions, competitions, and programmes related to Mahatma Gandhi, various great men, martyrs, freedom fighters, peace and harmony, and social unity will also be organised by this department, said Gayatri Rathor, who has been made the Principal secretary of the newly formed department.
The state Education Department will also integrate Gandhian Darshan (Principles) in the form of content and activities in the School Curriculum Framework (SCF). The department of peace and non-violence in coordination with the education department will formulate a policy on imparting Gandhian studies in both schools and in colleges.
Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot said that he has been greatly disturbed by the communal hatred spread by the BJP that caused tension and rift in the society.
“The BJP has used the communal card in the name of Hindutva and that led to fear psychosis among the members of the society. Gandhiji always stressed on communal harmony and tolerance and respected all religions. Some political parties are trying to disturb the social fabric through their hate campaigns. The youth of the country must understand the ill motives of such political outfits. But we have given thought to making Gandhian studies a part of education and educating our youngsters on the ideals of Mahatma Gandhi. The Congress government showed its commitment by setting up a separate directorate and now it will become an independent department. This only shows our commitment (to the cause of unity and communal harmony) and I am sure other states of the country would follow Rajasthan” said Gehlot.
After receiving a directive from the Chief Minister, the state’s education department is formulating a course for Gandhian studies at both school and college levels. The Rajasthan State Institute of Educational Research and Training has been entrusted with the job of formulating the syllabus.
The state is the first to have integrated the Gandhian principles in the School Curriculum Framework (SCF) and Gandhian principles like self–reliance, and moral values will be included in textbooks from classes one to 12 in the next academic year beginning in 2023.
An official of the state edu-research institute Kamlendra Ranawat said that the new textbooks will have interesting aspects of Gandhiji’s life in form of an anecdotal account that would not only educate but would also inspire the youngsters.
The textbooks will also have elements like frugal engineering which is also called Gandhian engineering.
“Gandhian engineering stresses on innovations that are affordable. 'More from less for more' (MLM) can also be achieved by more and more participants in the innovation process.
"The MLM strategy forces us to measure an opportunity by the ends of innovation - what people actually get to enjoy - as opposed to just an increase in their means. The Jaipur Foot is a local innovation on trying to get 'more performance from less financial resources'” said an official of the peace and non-violence directorate.
The department would work on optimum utilisation of resources by encouraging students to use recycled goods, waste management, and adopt eco-friendly systems.
The state government is also building a massive and unique center for Gandhian studies and museum. Among other things, the center will have an arcade that would showcase and sell rural products.
The state government has already launched an initiative of honouring all those people on the world non-violence day who have spent their lives propagating the ideals of Gandhi.
The newly instituted Gandhi Sadbhavna Samman Puraskar carries an award of Rs five lakh and was awarded in its inaugural year posthumously to Gandhian Subba Rao, and journalist Nemi Chand Bhavuk . The others honoured were Amarnath Bhai, D R Mehta and Kumar Prashant.