Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday said inculcating the India first mindset in students is the primary objective of the Deshbhakti curriculum started last year in Delhi government schools. He also asked teachers to inculcate in every student the thought of making India number one. He was speaking at an event to mark the completion of one year of the Deshbhakti curriculum launched last year on the birth anniversary of Shaheed Bhagat Singh.
“Deshbhakti curriculum’s three main objectives — India First, recognising the sacrifice of freedom fighters and understanding responsibilities of a good citizen. This is also the time for evaluation of the Deshbhakti curriculum for further enhancement and implementation,” he said. He said the government had started three curricula in Delhi government schools –Happiness, Entrepreneurship and Deshbhakti curriculum — that have been widely loved by children. While happiness classes teach how to become good individuals, Deshbhakti classes teach one on how to become responsible citizens, he said. Entrepreneurship classes enable students to stand on their own feet after passing out from school, he said.
“These curriculum are a first of their kind experiment that the world is witnessing in Delhi. Very soon, the entire world will adopt them in their schools. “Teachers should inculcate the thought of making India number one in every student so that every child passing out from school always carries the spirit in their mind, the Chief Minister said.
“If 130 crore Indians start working with the spirit of making India number one, then no force can stop India from becoming a superpower,” he asserted. The Chief Minister opined that what all is being taught to the students in deshbhakti classes, that spirit and spark will always remain ignited in them. Talking about the three objectives of starting the Deshbhakti curriculum, Kejriwal said the students should have the feeling of ‘India first’ at all points of time.
“There are several instances where our self-interest is in conflict with the nation’s interest. If we act in self-interest, we will cause a loss to the country. We should work for the nation selflessly,” he asserted. He said through this curriculum, students are taught about the lives of freedom fighters to ensure that they remember them forever. “It should remain in their conscience and they could have living experience of the same. We ensure that students understand their civic responsibilities. They should be conscious that they are not littering garbage or breaking traffic rules or any other law,” he said.
Noting that deshbhakti has many facets, he said students told him that earlier they used to think that those who fight at the border are deshbhakts but after this curriculum, they got to know that cleanliness is also a form of deshbhakti. “A student said that earlier her mother stopped her from talking to children belonging to other castes. Now, the student, her mother and their environment have changed at once with these classes. It was such a powerful message and I believe that if we could run deshbhakti classes across the country, we might put an end to casteism in the country,” he asserted.
Chief Minister said the government will also evaluate how the curriculum can be improved further by inculcating more aspects and modifying the existing ones. On the occasion, students also shared their experiences about the curriculum. Vanshika, a Class 10 student said she has a friend who belongs to a different caste. “My parents did not allow me to talk to her and I thought that they were right. I stopped talking to her for a while. But when my teacher explained that casteism is bad practice, I thought how can I be a patriot if I also follow this. I shouldn’t do that. We should live in harmony with each other and treat them equally,” she said.
Tanisha Sharma, another student, said earlier she used to hear about the word deshbhakti but we never understood what it meant. “But now we have come to know the true meaning of deshbhakti, now we have come to know that we can be a deshbhakt only by working for the betterment of society,” she said.