NEW DELHI -- After an Organiser article termed as "anti-Hindu" the protests against Gajendra Chauhan's appointment as FTII chairman, another piece in the RSS organ has alleged that prestigious institutes like IITs were being turned into places for "anti-India and anti-Hindu" activities.
Suggesting that political motives were behind opposition by some IIMs to the government's moves, the article said the Left and Congress "still control the premium institutes" and both parties are "masters" at "ideological control" of an institute through the Board of Governors and Directors.
It has also taken potshots at former Chairman of the Board of Governors, IIT Bombay, and noted nuclear scientist Anil Kakodkar, and IIM, Ahmedabad, Chairman A M Naik for their criticism of the ministry over various issues.
Claiming that non-vegetarian food began to be served at IIT Roorkee "in the holy city of Haridwar" and students at NIT, Rourkela, were "stopped" from holding Puja in community hall, both under the UPA rule, it said these incidents show that "these government-funded institutes from tax payers money are becoming a place for anti-India and anti-Hindu activities."
"Faculties with low moral are misguiding students. These activities either don't come to notice of Board of Governors or are being ignored... Board of Governors should also be made responsible for anti-India and anti-Hindu activities being carried out in the institutes," it said.
Taking a dig at Kakodkar, the article in the RSS weekly said he accused HRD Minister Smriti Irani of taking IIT directors' recruitment "casually" but did not say a word over celebration of 'Kiss of Love' by IIT Mumbai faculty and students.
The RSS weekly has been strongly arguing for the government to bring in changes in the education sector in line with the Hindutva outfit's views and has hit out at those opposed to its policies.
Several older IIMs have also crititiced the draft bill prepared by the HRD Ministry that would give sweeping powers to the government in running the institutions.
The proposed bill, the article said, would make it difficult for political parties to control the appointment of directors and chairpersons and that is why many people were opposing it. It spoke about officials linked with the Left and Congress being appointed to these institutions.
"The bill introduces a provision under which the appointment of directors and chairpersons will have to be approved by the Visitor- the President of India- not the appointments committee of the Cabinet headed by the Prime Minister," it said, batting for the draft bill.
Naik's reported comments against the draft bill have been criticised in the article, which said the "ethics" that are applicable to the Board of Directors in the corporate world should also be applicable to the board in these institutes.
"Otherwise it will be very difficult to put these institutes, who are creators of India's future, on the correct path."
Meanwhile, IIT Delhi's decision to invite yoga guru Ramdev and an RSS affiliate for deliberations on a programme to leverage the technical strength of the IITs for development of rural areas has raised eyebrows.
Ramdev and members of RSS' Vanvasi Kalyan Ashram had attended the meeting on implementation of Unnat Bharat Abhiyan in January this year along with other stakeholders and professors associated with the programme including chairman of IIT Delhi Board of Governors, Vijay Bhatkar.
The meeting, during which involvement of cows to address rural issues were discussed, came at a time when the then IIT Delhi Director R Shivgaonkar had stepped down from his post amid allegations of interference of the HRD ministry. His resignation was accepted in June this year.
While Union HRD minister Smriti Irani had consistently denied saffronisation of education, yesterday she held deliberations with RSS affiliated bodies on the new education policy during which they are understood to have also discussed the appointments of possible candidates in various institutes and varsities in the country.
However, IIT Delhi sought to downplay the presence of Ramdev saying he was invited as he wanted to collaborate with the rural development initiatives.
Meanwhile, officials in the HRD ministry said they were not aware of Ramdev's presence in that meeting.
"He wanted to collaborate with rural development activities and we had invited him since he was in Delhi during that period. He also wanted to explore technologies which we wanted to establish in his clusters," said Professor Virender Kumar Vijay of the Centre for Rural Development and Technology at IIT Delhi, which is considered as one of the brainchild behind the programme.
Professor Vijay also sought to play down reports that they have collaborated with some spiritual gurus in taking ahead the programme.
"We have in fact collaborated with about 100 agencies in our mission which also comprised other spiritual gurus. They are having their people connect and if they are connected with the people and want to do something for rural technologies then only we will be considering," he said.
Unnat Bharat Abhiyan, a HRD Ministry scheme anchored by IIT Delhi, seeks to leverage the technical strength of the IITs to help develop rural India through technological intervention.