18/01/2017 10:20 AM IST | Updated 18/01/2017 10:56 AM IST

Modi And Vivekananda To Share Wall Space At MP Schools And Colleges After Strict Govt Diktat

"It was done under pressure from the RSS. "

NurPhoto via Getty Images
A file photo of Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his visit to Belur Math. The Prime Minister sat near the slippers of Swami Vivekananda to meditate in the 19th century philosopher-saint's room at the math for around 15 minutes.

Days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi 'replaced' Mahatma Gandhi in the 2017 wall calendar and table diary published by the Khadi Village Industries Commission, Madhya Pradesh government has found a new way to educate children about the prowess of Modi.

According to a report in Hindustan Times, all educational institutions in Madhya Pradesh have been asked to display portraits of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Swami Vivekananda, a 19th century Hindu monk and religious philosopher.

Academical institutions have received circulars ordering them to put pictures of five personalities in their premises. Besides Modi and Vivekananda, they are supposed to put portraits of Mahatma Gandhi, Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar and President Pranab Mukherjee.

"The minister has made it compulsory to display portraits in all government colleges, universities and offices. There are strict instructions for action against officers disobeying the order," Ashish Upadhyaya, the higher education principal secretary told HT.

So what happens if school authorities don't follow the rules?

The BJP-led government has threatened to take disciplinary action if they defy the latest diktat.

It's not the first time Modi and Swami Vivekananda have been placed next to each other. In 2012, when Modi was the Gujarat chief minister, during a school enrollment drive launched in Vadodara, notebooks were distributed with his and Vivekananda's photos printed next to each other.

The Opposition in Madhya Pradesh has criticised the move of putting up portraits in schools, saying it was done under pressure from the RSS.

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