There will be no holiday in Rajasthan's universities for Gandhi Jayanti on October 2.
The Rajasthan government's decision to remove Gandhi Jayanti from the list of holidays in state universities has snowballed into a controversy with the Congress alleging a political angle to it.
The new holiday calendar passed by the office of Rajasthan governor Kalyan Singh has holidays for Moharram and Diwali in the month of October, but not on Gandhi Jayanthi, the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi. Moharram is listed on October 1, a day before Gandhi Jayanthi. This despite Gandhi Jayanti being listed as a holiday in the state government's holiday list.
The government has defended the move claiming that the day will be utilised to hold functions to celebrate the birth of the Father of the Nation. "Please remember till today Gandhi Jayanti has never been a holiday in schools, so that we can hold functions in schools and celebrate the occasion. That's why we thought something similar should be done in colleges and universities, they should have a similar calendar," said minister of higher education Kiran Maheshwari.
The minister's comments however has failed to convince the Congress. "This is unfortunate since this holiday has a major significance. We cannot understand from any angle why Gandhi Jayanti has been removed from holiday list. This is done by the people from the RSS to elaborate their agenda, they do not believe in the ideology of Gandhi," senior Congress man and former chief minister Ashok Gehlot said.