Supreme Court of India has agreed to hear a Public Interest Litigation seeking for making Yoga compulsory for all the students of Class I-VIII.
The PIL filed by Advocate and BJP Spokes person Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay states that Right to Health cannot be secured without providing “Yoga and Health Education” to all the Children and without framing a “National Yoga Policy” to promote and propagate the Yoga.
The Bench comprising Chief Justice TS Thakur , Justices DY Chandrachud and Nageshswar Rao will hear the PIL on 7.11.2016.
It points out that Article 21(Right to Personal Life and Liberty) read with Article 39(e), 39(f) and 47 which are directive principles of state policy, casts the duty on the State to take appropriate steps to improve health of the citizens and provide necessary information instruction and training in this regard.
While emphasizing on the importance of yoga, the PIL mentions, the National Curriculum Framework 2005 specifically says that yoga is core and compulsory subject of the elementary education thus it needs to be given equal status with other subjects. There are about 20 crores children, throughout the country, studying in primary and junior classes at the cost of public exchequer. Yoga should be taught to them as a compulsory subject as per National Curriculum Framework 2005, notified under Section 7(6) of the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act 2009, the PIL says.
From the court the petitioner seeks for proper implementation of ‘Yoga and Health Education’ at primary and junior level with the object to make our children healthy through Pranayams and Asanas. It also wants direction to the Ministry of HRD, NCERT, NCTE and CBSE to provide standard textbooks of ‘Yoga and Health Education’ for students of Class I-VIII.
The PIL also seeks for the Ministry of AYUS and Ministry of Health and Family Welfare to frame a ‘National Yoga Policy’ to promote and propagate the Yoga and directions for the Ministry of Women and Child Development and Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment to declare ‘First Sunday’ of every month as ‘Health Day’ on the lines of ‘Polio Day’ to make the people aware about health-hazards and health-hygiene. The court has slated it to be heard on November 7.
Interestingly, in a PIL filed in the Bombay High court which objected to a BMC resolution that made surya namaskar and yoga mandatory in all civic schools, the division bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice MS Sonak had observed – ‘surya namaskar’ and yoga are just forms of exercise which are good for a healthy body, and this move by the BMC need not be communalised. The petitioner sought a stay on this resolution.
Read the petition here.
This article has been made possible because of financial support from Independent and Public-Spirited Media Foundation.