The Maharashtra government resolution (GR) ordering all state employees to welcome with “Vande Mataram” rather than the recognised “Hello!” sparked a political scuffle here on Sunday.
The decision, which was first proposed in mid-August, was put into effect as part of the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav on the 153rd anniversary of the birth of Mahatma Gandhi, the Father of the Nation.
The GR was issued by the General Administration Department, which is led by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde, and it pertains to personnel in aided schools, colleges, local civic authorities, government and semi-government organisations, as well as other institutions.
A big controversy developed, however, as political parties expressed concerns, alternate greetings were suggested, and even some individuals opposed it.
Maha Vikas Aghadi, the opposition, also had a position on the matter.
President of the Maharashtra Samajwadi Party Abu Asim Azmi was adamant that the action was unacceptable.