Once again, some opposition chief ministers have filed petitions against their Governors in the Supreme Court for allegedly exceeding their roles.
Addressing the launch event of the Kerala SCERT textbooks, which reintegrated certain sections that were previously removed from NCERT textbook, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan remarked, “In the near future, it is quite possible that they will depict [Gandhi’s assassin] Godse as a revered figure.”
On August 23, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan of Kerala expressed concerns about the “regressive” alterations implemented in the school syllabus by the central government. He emphasized that these modifications could have a detrimental impact on an entire generation of students.
Pinarayi Vijayan warned that such changes might cultivate an atmosphere of animosity among children, potentially leading to communal conflicts. Speaking during an event in Thiruvananthapuram, where the Kerala SCERT introduced supplementary textbooks for higher secondary students, the Chief Minister highlighted the inclusion of removed content.
He additionally remarked that he found the explanations provided by the NCERT unsatisfactory. The explanations stated that certain sections need not be there to streamline content and lighten the load of textbooks. He contended that instead, these actions seemed to align with a broader political motive, intending to undermine the secular values and rational mindset that the Constitution upholds. The Times of India reported his statements.
“Soon, they will undoubtedly portray [Nathuram] Godse (Gandhi’s assassin) as a great personality,” he scoffed.
What did he point out?
He highlighted that specific segments concerning the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi no longer existed. He underscored that this omission appeared to be a deliberate effort to conceal “particular organizations and ideologies associated with the assassination.”
Moreover, he criticized the exclusion of content pertaining to the Mughal rule period as a strategy to create a sense of alienation towards a particular community. He strongly asserted that incorporating unscientific alterations driven by political agendas into the curriculum could significantly warp the perspective of students.
The CM added that for education for social progress, society, history, and science must be factual.
The State Council of Educational Research and Training (SCERT) released these textbooks. They are designed for students following the NCERT syllabus, according to General Education Minister V Sivankutty.
He further disclosed that updated versions of textbooks for grades 1, 3, 5, 7, and 9 will come out in 2024. Those for grades 2, 4, 6, 8, and 10 will come out in 2025.
Previously, Sivankutty highlighted that a sub-committee, established by Kerala’s curriculum committee, engaged in extensive deliberations and concluded that multiple sections eliminated from NCERT textbook by the NCERT held significant value. Educators deemed it imperative not to leave out such pivotal historical events from students’ knowledge.
He emphasized that these sections would be a part of the syllabus rather than being supplementary readings. The Minister stressed that students should study these portions for their examinations, as this approach would encourage them to delve into the content and grasp their history.
Earlier this year, the NCERT decided to remove sections from school textbooks. These covered evolution, the periodic table of elements, sources of energy, history, and environmental sustainability. They covered content on pollution, climate change, and energy sources as well.