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ALLAHABAD: Eight teachers, including the principal of a private school in Saidabad, Baghara had quit their job on Friday in protest against the manager’s decision of not allowing students to sing the National Anthem on Independence Day. The manager has already banned national song Vande Mataram and Saraswati Vandana.The manager said the anthem goes against the community and should not be allowed to be sung in schools. The manager is running two schools and both are not affiliated. The school in Saidabad has 330 students and 20 teachers. On Friday, teachers of a particular community ‘quit’ their jobs in protest against the decision of the manager.

Principal Ritu Shukla said, “I was supposed to make preparations for Independence Day programme. The National Anthem was to be sung after the unfurling of the Tricolour. We had also lined up Saraswati Vandana and Vande Mataram for the event.”

She said, “On Thursday, the programme was presented to manager and owner of the school Zia-ul-Haq. He said that Saraswati Vandana and Vande Mataram hurt the sentiments of the community. Then he raised objections on a line of National Anthem and said this too will not be sung.”

When the principal protested, he allegedly said that those who are objecting to my decision on National Anthem, could leave the school. Eight teachers decided to resign in protest against the decision of the manager.

“I had said that in the National Anthem there is a line ‘Bharat Bhagya Vidhata…’ which was misconstrued. ‘Bharat’ cannot be our Almighty or master of fate and it is ‘Allah’, who has the power to change our future and no one else,” he said.

Basic shiksha adhikari Jaikaran Yadav said, “No school manager can stop teachers or students to sing the National Anthem or any other patriotic song. We had initiated a probe and action will be taken accordingly.”

Chief secretary Deepak Singhal said, “I will look into the issue and appropriate action will be taken.”