The BJP may have ended Akhilesh Yadav's reign in Uttar Pradesh, but the Samajwadi Party chief has made a comeback of sorts, and of all places, in saffron stronghold Gujarat. In a curious turn of events, some 12,000 school bags distributed in government-run primary schools in the state's tribal-dominated Chhota Udepur district bear Akhilesh's picture. The education department has now ordered an inquiry into how these bags landed up in Gujarat. The school bags came with stickers of the Gujarat government's school enrolment program.
Beneath these stickers, however, is a smiling Akhilesh. The bags were distributed to students under the state government's 'Shala Praveshotsav' programme, an annual drive to enrol students in class 1. That they have Akhilesh's picture was first discovered by teachers at a school in Vasedi village when the stickers reading 'Jilla Panchayat Shala Praveshotsav' came off. The district panchayat had procured 12,000 of these bags through an e-tender from a Surat-based company, said district primary education officer Mahesh Prajapati. Minister of state for education Bhupendrasinh Chudasama said an inquiry will be conducted and "action will be taken" against those responsible for this goof-up. The bags were apparently manufactured for distribution in Uttar Pradesh when the Samajwadi Party was in power. The opposition Congress took this opportunity to take a swipe at the BJP government. "Instead of providing teachers, the government is distributing recycled bags of a former UP government by carrying out this drama of Shala Praveshotsav. It shows how serious the government is towards education," Gujarat Congress spokesman Manish Doshi said.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)