Is the BJP Govt withdrawing the MoI bill?

GOANEWS DESK, PANAJI | 15 March 2016 17:43 IST

The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party is trying to push for withdrawing the controversial Medium of Instruction bill, obviously on technical grounds.

An attempt was made in this regard at the select committee meeting yesterday, but the decision was postponed as some opposition members advised the government to be cautious.

The select committee met after the meeting of the BJP legislators held on Saturday, chaired by defence minister Manohar Parrikar.

The party meeting discussed the MoI issue in the background of RSS-headed Bharatiya Bhasha Suraksha Manch intensifying its campaign with a demand to stop government grants to over 130 Church-run English medium primary schools.

As the issue came up at the BJP meeting held on Saturday, Parrikar has reportedly told the party leaders that the government cannot afford to take a decision to withdraw grants during election year.

Following this was the select committee meeting held yesterday, under the chairmanship of Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar.

The Goa School Education (Amendment) Bill 2014, presented in the House on 18 August last year, was referred the next day to the select committee, then chaired by former chief minister Parrikar.

According to sources, Parsekar, the new chairman of the select committee, proposed that the bill be referred back to the House with a proposal to withdraw it and present a fresh one.

Though he said the bill is full of technical flaws, he reportedly did not specify what the technical flaws are.

Parsekar had earlier told goanews.com that members as well as officials had pointed out several technical discrepancies in the bill.

Congress MLA and former chief minister Digambar Kamat, during whose term grants to Church-run schools had started, pointed out at the meeting that withdrawing the bill may lead to a new demand that all English medium primary schools should be given grants.

Mauvin Godinho, the Congress legislator more close to the ruling BJP nowadays, however insisted that grants be given only to the Church-run schools.

The meeting thus decided to discuss the issue threadbare after the session while taking a final decision before the monsoon session. 

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