In a bizarre notification issued by the local administration in a Chhattisgarh district, the heads of all government-run schools in the region have been asked to ensure that students in their respective institutions watch Salman Khan’s blockbuster Sultan, being screened in a local theater.
In an official order dated July 28, 2016, the block education officer (BEO), Gorella, in Bilashpur district, directed all the principals of high schools, higher secondary schools and headmasters of all the middle schools and primary schools in the region to make arrangements for the “willing” students of their respective institutions to visit the local theatre, Annapurna Chitra Mandir, to watch the movie between July 29 and August 4.
“Tickets for the students, interested to watch the movie, should be booked for the afternoon show (12 noon to 3 pm) one day early. Prior intimations should be made to the officer concerned as well as the theatre managing director for the purpose by the heads of the educational institutions,” the one-page official order typed in Hindi said.
The contact numbers of the BEO, Gorella, and the theatre have been mentioned as well for the benefit of the heads of these schools. A copy of the order is in possession of this newspaper.
The ticket rate for the students of primary and middle schools has been fixed Rs 20 per head. Similarly, the rate for students of high schools and higher secondary schools has been fixed at Rs 30 per head.
The order sparked resentment in the education circle in the block, with heads of several schools contemplating to petition the district collector seeking its withdrawal.