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regular-article-logo Thursday, 29 February 2024

Kerala likely to teach NCERT's deleted portions in state schools

A curriculum committee has entrusted General Education Minister V Sivankutty with taking a final decision on the matter after consulting with the govt and CM Pinarayi Vijayan

PTI Thiruvananthapuram Published 26.04.23, 04:37 PM
Representational image.

Representational image. Shutterstock

Students in Kerala are likely to be taught the portions that the NCERT had deleted from its class 11 and 12 textbooks, including those pertaining to the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi and the ban on RSS.

The NCERT recently had, in the name of rationalisation of the syllabus, dropped from its class 12 history textbook certain portions on Mahatma Gandhi and how his pursuit of Hindu-Muslim unity "provoked Hindu extremists". It also left out the portion where the government placed a ban on the RSS after Gandhi’s assassination. The revision of textbooks by obfuscating facts has triggered a row.

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The State Council of Education Research and Training (SCERT), an autonomous body of the General Education Department, is considering a decision by its curriculum steering committee to include these deleted portions in the state syllabus.

The committee, which met on Tuesday, has entrusted General Education Minister V Sivankutty with taking a final decision on the matter after consulting with the government and Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.

Confirming the development, Sivankutty told reporters here that the SCERT and the Curriculum Committee take decisions on the academic affairs of the general education department of the state.

As per an MoU entered with the NCERT, Kerala has been using their 44 textbooks, and of them, there has been a significant change in the content of subjects including history, political science, economics, and sociology at the higher-secondary level, the minister explained.

"The curriculum committee unanimously decided to include all those portions omitted from these text books in the syllabus and teach the students in the state. I have been entrusted to inform the government and the CM about the decision and take a necessary decision in this regard," he said.

He said a final decision would be taken after consulting with Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.

The minister said several important portions, including the assassination of Gandhiji, the ban on RSS, Mughal history, the industrial revolution, and the history of post-independent India, including five-year plans, have been excluded from the NCERT textbooks.

"Gandhiji was assassinated...but in their textbook, it was mentioned that Gandhi had died...like (they are saying) he died of a heart attack," the minister said, taking a dig at the NCERT.

The minister indicated that the deleted portions would be included and taught to the students during this academic year itself.

A decision was also taken to inform the Centre about the development and petition Prime Minister Narendran Modi and the Union Education Ministry about the omission of the portions from the NCERT textbooks.

An SCERT source here said if a final nod was received from the government, they would bring out supplementary textbooks comprising those deleted portions for class 11 and 12, and it would be taught in state schools.

Chief Minister Vijayan had strongly condemned the dropping of certain chapters and portions from NCERT Class 12 textbooks and alleged that "complete saffronisation" of academic books was the objective behind the move.

Among portions deleted from the textbook are: "Gandhiji’s death had a magical effect on the communal situation in the country", "Gandhi’s pursuit of Hindu-Muslim unity provoked Hindu extremists," and "Organisations like the RSS were banned for some time".

Portions referring to the Gujarat riots were also dropped from the class 11 sociology textbook, months after NCERT removed the reference to the 2002 communal violence in two class 12 textbooks.

The Congress has accused the Centre of "whitewashing" and "distorting" history.

NCERT Chief Dinesh Saklani said the syllabus was "rationalised" in June last year itself, and there has been no trimming of the curriculum this year.

Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Telegraph Online staff and has been published from a syndicated feed.

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