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October 24, 2016

‘Govt will not be dictated by isolated extremist elements’

Karachi

 
October 24, 2016

CM Murad Ali Shah shoots down news report on dance lessons being

banned by provincial education ministry

The Sindh government moved on Sunday to clarify its stance on dance being taught in the province’s schools as Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah – evidently having taken notice of a news report published yesterday – asserted that his government would take strict action against any attempts to ban dance in educational institutes of Sindh.

“The government of Sindh firmly believes in preserving and promoting culture and heritage, as enshrined in the constitution of Pakistan. It will not be dictated by isolated extremist elements and will not allow its progressive agenda to be hijacked at any cost,” stated the CM in a direct message to media outlets.

The controversy started early in October when an MPA of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), Khurram Sherzaman, raised objections over dance lessons being imparted at private educational institutes and demanded action from the minister concerned.

The PTI lawmaker wrote a letter in which he had based his demand on the Islamic identity of Pakistan, stating, “I feel strongly that dance classes should not be held in schools, as Pakistan is an Islamic republic and [dance] is against Islamic principles and teachings. I kindly request that you look into this matter and take appropriate action in accordance with Islamic principles and injunctions that are protected and advocated in our constitution.”

With an English daily reporting on Sunday that the education department had issued letters to private schools warning the managements against dance lessons, the CM came out with a strong denial stating that “the minister concerned has categorically denied endorsing any such ban and notice has been taken regarding the statement falsely attributed to him.” 

“Dance and music are integral parts of a liberal society and we continue our support to such activities. Action is being taken against any notification issued to ban dance lessons in schools and those found responsible will be taken to task,” said CM Shah.

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