NCPUL forces staff to attend RSS chief’s Urdu book launch?

The NCPUL in its official circular stated that, it is mandatory for all its staff to attend the book launch of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat’s book Mustaqbil Ka Bharat.

New Delhi: The National Council for Promotion of Urdu Language (NCPUL) has made it compulsory for all its staff to attend the book launch of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat’s book Mustaqbil Ka Bharat.

According to an official circular signed by the assistant director (administration), Kamal Singh, a “show cause notice will be issued to those who are found absent from the function”.

The NCPUL circular

“In continuation of office order dated 31.03.2021 regarding participation in the book release function to be held on 05th April, 2021 at 04.30 in the multipurpose hall at India International Centre, Lodhi Road, New Delhi, Director desires that all officers/staff (regular/contract) will compulsorily attend the function on scheduled date and time except those on approved leave or on other acceptable reason,” read the circular.

Published by the NCPUL, an autonomous body under the Ministry of Education, Department of Secondary and Higher Education, Government of India, the book is a compilation of Bhagwat’s lectures, which were delivered in September 2018 under a series titled ‘Bhavishya Ka Bharat (India of the Future)’. Translated to Urdu by Shaikh Aquil Ahmad, director of the NCPUL, the book is scheduled to be released on Monday evening at the India International Centre in Delhi. 

Justifying the circular, Ahmad said to The Wire, “To run an institution, sometimes you have to take these kinds of steps. However, if someone really has a valid reason not to participate, he or she may do so after taking prior permission.” He claimed that the institute has excused many of its staff members from the event because they had valid reasons. “We are not forcing anyone to participate, but to make it a success we need staff to be there to manage it,” he maintained.

When asked about the clause of issuing a show cause notice in case of absence, the director said, “it is just a process to enquire why you were absent. It does not mean that we are suspending someone.” He also maintained that such a circular is necessitated because staff are required to manage the event. However, some of the staff members The Wire spoke to said that this is the first time that a clause about the ‘show cause notice’ has been added to the general circular, which is worrying.

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