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PM Modi will make his Teachers' Day address at a Delhi auditorium with about 700 children in the audience. Many more will link in via satellite. National broadcaster Doordarshan will telecast the programme live. It will also be webcast on a government website and can be heard on radio.
The Prime Minister will take questions from his audience and from students at National Information Centres in Leh, Port Blair, Silchar (Assam), Imphal, Bhuj (Gujarat), Dantewada (Chhattisgarh) and Thiruvannamalai (Tamil Nadu).
In a message posted on Twitter this morning, he wrote, "We salute all teachers, who tirelessly light the lamp of knowledge."
Yesterday, in an email message to teachers, the PM said India should regain the status of 'vishwaguru' (leader in education) by according the high respect to teachers, who he asked to encourage students to think critically about issues concerning the nation.
Over 18 lakh government and private schools in the country are expected to participate. The CBSE - which has 12 million students in 12,504 schools, including 1,002 Kendriya Vidyalayas, 1,944 government schools and 8,966 independent schools - put up a notice on its website asking for arrangements to be made for students to watch the address in school.
Many schools have changed timings for today to ensure students can watch or hear the PM there. In Delhi, some day schools have asked students to come in by noon and school hours have been extended till 5 pm.
Human Resource Development Minister Smriti Irani has clarified that the attendance of students at school for the programme is "completely voluntary." But her ministry has sent out a circular asking schools to send in a report on attendance, arrangements and wit feedback on a Google form. A circular from Delhi's education directorate said any "laxity in the arrangements shall be viewed seriously".
Principals and teachers at several schools said they had not received any formal communication about participation being voluntary, news agency IANS reported.
At schools in rural Tamil Nadu and Kerala, students are worried that they will not understand the PM's speech if he speaks in Hindi. "We want the PM to speak in English, we understand only Tamil and English," said a student at a Tamil Nadu school, where 1300 students will gather along with their teachers in an open courtyard to watch the PM's address.
Opposition parties have accused the Modi government of turning Teachers' Day into a political exercise. They have questioned the timing of the much-hyped address, which comes as the Modi government completes 100 days in office.