Two teachers of a government school have been sent on leave by the school administration after receiving complaints from parents over their children being given prayer pamphlets with religious figures and symbols on them.
Pushpakumari, the headmistress of Azhikode government school, however, said that the issue has been resolved.
“As part of improving public education various workshops on Science, communicative English and Mathematics were conducted in school. In one such workshop, the person who took a class on Math gave away printed pamphlets to students. Two teachers who were in charge failed to see that it contained religious symbols… A prayer written by one of the teachers was also included in the booklet,” Pushpakumari said.
Pamphlets with pictures of Goddess Saraswati, Lord Ayyappa and the Om symbol, had been distributed to students by the teachers.
“Some parents complained about the use of religious figures in the pamphlets. A probe was ordered by the Education Department and the teachers were asked to go on leave on February 10,” she added.
A probe was conducted by the administration and a report was submitted by the Assistant Educational Officer Raj Kumar.
“There were efforts from certain parties to give it a communal agenda and spark religious tension. But the locals and the Parents’ Teachers Association did not allow them to take matters in their hands. The AEO discussed with all those involved and amicably settled the issue. Both teachers have requested a transfer as they are hesitant to continue in the same school,” a senior official of the Educational Department said.
One of the teachers, Rajalakshmi, who wrote the prayer, has filed a police complaint alleging that she has received threats.