Free bicycle initiative in Punjab
ndian school students cycle on bicycles donated by Punjab Transport Minister Ajit Singh Kohar at a government school in Amritsar on August 4, 2016. The Punjab state distributed free bicycles to all girls studying in Class 11 and Class 12 in government schools under the Mai Bhago Vidya Scheme. / AFP / NARINDER NANUNARINDER NANU/AFP/Getty Images

Taking a cue from a Rajasthan school teacher, Sandeep Joshby,  who was recently awarded by a RSS affiliated student wing for instilling nationalism among his students, the Gujarat government has asked all the government and state-funded schools to ensure that its students respond with "Jai Bharat" or"Jai Hind" during roll calls instead of "present sir/madam.

The circular was issued by the State Education Department on Monday and would be enforced from January 1 across the Gujarat Schools from class 1 to 12. The notification said that the directive was issued by the State Education Minister Bhupendrasinh Chudasama.

It further states "in order to instill nationalism among the students from a young age, the sudents of all schools, government, grant-in-aid as well as private, should say 'Jai Bharat' or 'Jai Hind', instead of 'Yes sir' or 'Present sir' across the state from January 1, 2019. Ensure this is followed across all schools."

The Education department officials told the Indian Express that the decision came after a school teacher from Jalore districtn of Rajashthan was recently awarded by the Akhil Bharatiya Vidya Parishad (ABVP) with Yashwantrao Kelkar youth award for his work as well as making his studens say "Jai Hind" and "Jai Bharat" during roll call.

The education minister justified the decision by saying that it was an old practice in Gujarat schools to say "Jai Hind or Jai Bharat" during roll calls which somewhow was not followed now and the same has been revived.

Earlier, the former BJP government led by Vasundhara Raje had come under heavy critcism for changing the school curriculum and forcing the ideas of nationalism and culturalism among the students. 

The Rajasthan Education department had defended is the decision of including the native history and culture as well as that of India by saying that the young children should first learn from their own society than from the outside world.