Chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan has brought out a couple of booklets to educate school children on a host of issues ranging from organic farming to rational thinking. Lower primary students have been given a booklet titled ‘Padhathinappuram’, while older children have been gifted with ‘Jeevithapadham’.
The chief minister exhorts girls to play in the open field along with boys. He wants students to take an initiative in growing organic vegetables. “Why don’t the 35 lakh children in Kerala plant 10 okra plants each? We would have 3.5 crore plants. We could produce 17.5 lakh kilo vegetables if the students wish so. Children have a big role to play in keeping the schools, houses and other places clean,” he said.
The book is strewn with practical tips, such as washing hands over the kitchen garden to save water. While reminding the students of the state government’s decision to declare jackfruit as the official fruit of Kerala, Pinarayi asked the children if they would like to plant a jackfruit tree to celebrate their birthdays.
The chief minister wants the children to dig rainwater pits and do away with bottled water. “There would be many kinds of plants in a garden. Likewise, there are many faiths in society. The flowers in a garden do not fight each other. No one should fight in the name of religions,” he said.
The book also calls for vaccination to boost public health. The chief minister told the students to steer clear of irrational arguments. The children should respect elders and be kind to others.
Pinarayi even touched upon the use of internet among students. “Do not fall for everything you read on the internet. All the information you get on social media may not be true.”