In a step that will further strengthen the ‘Education Revolution’ of Delhi, Chief Minister Shri Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday laid the foundation stone for the new building blocks at Rajkiya Sarvodaya Kanya/Bal Vidyalaya, East Vinod Nagar. Remarking at the quality of the school, the CM said that through this initiative a Columbia University like govt school will come up in East Delhi. He also informed that Shri Manish Sisodia had planned this building, the government will continue his education revolution on mission mode. Notably, 93 rooms will be constructed in the new building. Classes will run in 71 and 22 rooms will be used for labs, library, activity, staff rooms and principal office.

Shri Arvind Kejriwal was warmly welcomed when he arrived at the school by the National Cadet Corps (NCC) band and the family members of the children. The event was also attended by Education Minister Ms Atishi and other senior government officers of the Education department and children and family members of the children presently studying in this school. Majority of the guests for the event were women and the Delhi CM said that he was very happy to see mothers and sisters of the students at the foundation stone ceremony today.

The CM also said that although both parents work extremely hard to provide the best education to their children, but it is the mother who generally worries more about the well-being of the child. “When I was a child, it was my mother who was present 24 hours to ensure whether I was studying well or not. My father went out to work so he would get home in the evening and ask if my studies were going well, but my mother was always by my side. Today, I can see so many mothers and sisters of the students at this event and I am sure they wanted to be here to know about how beautiful this school will turn out to be for their children,” he said.

The CM said that he has been informed that the level of education in this school has already been very high. He also said that the children over here learn four international languages – French, German, Spanish and Japanese. He pointed out that not many private schools across Delhi teach all of the four international languages. On a lighter note, he told the children that now besides learning international languages, they will also have buildings and facilities in the school that will match international standards. In total 93 new classrooms will be added in the school.

This school is currently serving as Sarvodaya Vidyalaya in two shifts and has a total of 5000 students. The first shift has 3000 girls enrolled in the school and in the second shift there are 2000 boys who are enrolled over here. This school offers all three streams – science, commerce and humanities in Classes 11th and 12th. The addition of 93 new equivalent classrooms will double the infrastructure of this school creating more space for children and better teaching learning environment. This school will also have state-of-the-art laboratories and libraries, and it will provide world-class learning opportunities for children.

Shri Arvind Kejriwal told the students present at the occasion that a photo has been displayed which shows how the school building will look when it is finally inaugurated after a year. He added that the school will look as beautiful as Colombia University in the USA and the students will be very proud of it. He highlighted the transformation brought about in the government schools in Delhi over the span of the last 8-9 years. “Just until a few years ago the conditions of the government school were so horrible and the children of poor families were forced to send their children there. But now the buildings of these schools and the facilities have been transformed. Now, parents are taking their children out of private schools and admitting their children to the government schools in Delhi. The results of the students in these government schools are also so good now. There has been an incredible transformation and the children and their parents in Delhi are very proud of it,” he said.

The Delhi CM pointed out that at the time of Independence in 1947, it was mostly government schools that were present across the country and the quality of these schools was good. He said that all the government officers or businessmen or people who achieved fame in any other field of life, they all studied in government schools at the time. However, he said that over time, the quality of these government schools deteriorated “most likely as part of a planned conspiracy” and that is when the private schools cropped up. “There was a point in the 1990s and the early 2000s were so many private schools had cropped up and these schools would each year hike their fees and the parents had no option but to pay more. So, the children of the poor would go to government schools, where the quality of education was poor. The children of wealthy families would go to private schools and there was a huge distinction between the children from the two families. The children of poor families, due to lower quality education would get smaller jobs and therefore remain poor, while the rich kids would get the good jobs and continue to earn well,” he said.

Pointing out that all private schools are not necessarily bad, the Delhi CM said that with the ‘Education Revolution’ in the National Capital, the children of government schools now dream big and have big aspirations. He added that they dream about studying in prestigious institutions such as IIT and AIIMS. “I have studied in an IIT and I know how difficult it is to get admission over there. But now when the children from our government schools get admission in the IITs, it gives me a lot of happiness. Our children are also getting admitted to AIIMS, which is the biggest medical college in the country. So, therefore a massive transformation has taken place in the last 8-9 years in Delhi,” he said.

The CM went on to credit Shri Manish Sisodia for this incredible transformation that has taken place in the field of education across Delhi. “There is only one name that can be associated with this revolution in Delhi and that name is Manish Sisodia. It had been 75 years since Independence and the children from poor families had basically even given up hope on getting good education in a government school and having a bright future for themselves. But then things changed here in Delhi, and I firmly believe that this is nothing but a miracle from the Gods, that Manish Sisodia came and became the Education Minister in Delhi,” he said.

He went on to add that the ‘Education Revolution’ in Delhi has now given hope to millions of children studying in the government schools in other states of the country. “They believe that the way things changed here in Delhi, similarly their government schools in other states will also improve and they will also be able to have a bright future very soon. A ray of hope has been brought in the lives of poor children across the country because of the work of Manish Sisodia,” he said.

Hitting out at the BJP-led Central Government, Shri Arvind Kejriwal said that these people went on to jail the person who improved the lives of poor children of Delhi. “Why would anyone want to jail a person who brought such hope to the lives of millions of children across the country? The BJP leaders say that he was involved in a scam and earned bribes worth crores. Any person who gets so much money is likely to misuse the money and indulge in wrong and criminal activities. But Manish Sisodia would wake up at 6 am and go to inspect schools. Have you heard of any criminal who wakes up that early and goes to inspect schools?” he asked.

The Delhi CM said that it is incredibly hard for any individual or a political party to remain on the path of truth and sincerely work for the people. He said that it was very easy for the Aam Aadmi Party to become like other political parties and indulge in corruption and misuse public funds. “But we were determined to not follow the path of other political parties and remain on the path of truth. It is very hard to remain on this path. All the negative forces of the world come and attack you and try to make you deviate from this path, but we remain firm, and therefore we are being politically targeted by other political parties,” he said.

He highlighted how even Lord Ram was troubled when he was on the path to truth and had to be banished from his kingdom for 14 years. But yet he never deviated from this path. Similarly, Satyavadi Harishchandra was also tested by the Gods and went on to lose his kingdom, but yet the king never deviated from his principles. Shri Arvind Kejriwal said that all the ‘great people’ are at some point tested by the Gods, and similarly, this jail term over a false case was nothing but a test for Shri Manish Sisodia. “I am sure that Manish Sisodia will emerge from jail after passing this test that the Gods have created for him. Just like how your children in Delhi schools are not just passing but marching ahead in their lives with good marks, Manish Sisodia will also come out with good marks and will pass the test created by the Gods,” he said.

He highlighted the magnificent facilities that will be available in this school very soon and concluded by saying that the new school will be inaugurated in February next year. “Today it is Ms Atishi and I who are laying the foundation stone for this school, but in February next year, it will be Manish Sisodia and I who will visit this school and inaugurate it,” he said.

CM Shri Arvind Kejriwal interacted with the media after laying the foundation stone. While responding to a query on Centre’s decision to bulldoze an existing MCD school near the BJP Headquarters he said, “It is painful to see a government school be demolished to make way for BJP’s office.” He stressed that while on one hand the AAP Government is putting all might towards building new schools in the capital, the BJP is demolishing existing schools.

Outlining the severity of the situation, the CM said that any act of demolishing a school in the name of “redevelopment” of a political party office is highly condemnable. He asserted that if BJP actually cares about educating the poor, it should demolish its party offices and build schools there. “BJP has nothing to gain out of demolishing schools to build its offices. Instead if they decide to construct schools instead of their party offices they’d at least be remembered by the future generations for doing some good.”

The Delhi CM also took to Twitter over the issue and wrote, “We will spend whatever money we have on educating the children of our country. We will give the best education to our children. Tomorrow one of these children will become the Prime Minister of the country. We do not want any undereducated person to become the PM of the country in future.”

While addressing the people at the foundation laying ceremony of the new building of RSKV East Vinod Nagar, Education Minister Ms Atishi said, “Today I would like to congratulate children and people of this area on the occasion of the foundation laying ceremony of this new school. When I came here a few days ago for inspection, officials of the Education Department and PWD showed me a drawing of the upcoming new school here. I questioned them repeatedly if that is the drawing of this particular government school or some other school in the US or UK. But they said this is not the drawing of any foreign educational institute, but of this new government school coming up in Delhi because our children are no less than their counterparts across the world. Our children deserve the best and to provide them world-class academic facilities we are building this magnificent state-of-the-art school.”

Ms Atishi further said, “Today as we lay the foundation stone for the new school in East Vinod Nagar, I am experiencing mixed feelings. I feel happy because nearly 5000 children in this area are going to get a magnificent government school building. Once there was a time when government schools were addressed as ‘tent wala school’ by people, now they will address the new government schools as ‘america ki building wala school’. Students studying here will feel proud to be alumni of this government school.”

On other hand, she said that she also felt a little sad because the person who envisioned this spectacular school here for children of this area, the crusader of Delhi Education Revolution Manish Sisodia was not present amongst today due to political reasons.

Whenever he came here, he had an urge to develop this school for the large number of students studying here. So he sat with the PWD officials and got this spectacular building designed for children here. It is a bit sad that due to political reasons and false allegations on him he is not present here, she added.

The Education Minister further said, “I would like to tell people framing false allegations against Manish Sisodia- You can put Manish Sisodia in jail, but not his dream of education. Whatever dreams Manish Sisodia has seen for this area, it is our responsibility to fulfill them. Students sitting here and studying in this school will not only make themselves and their families proud but also Manish Sisodia.”

She added that before the foundation laying ceremony, the principal of this school told that global languages such as French, German, Japanese and Spanish are taught in this school. “When we were studying, such global languages were not taught even in expensive private schools. Not only this, the students of Class 11 and 12 from this school are going to do internships with companies of France, Germany, Japan and Spain. Foreign companies are now eager to hire them because they know multiple languages. In the future we will see them becoming CEOs of some French, German or Japanese company and will feel proud of them,” said Ms Atishi.

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