After hijab, Karnataka focuses on school textbooks, revises sections that hurt the sentiments of certain communities

After hijab, Karnataka government continues its focus on education by bringing major changes in school textbooks in every chapter. The government has asked the textbook review committee to look at parts that hurt the sentiments of certain communities and revise them.

Rohith Chakrathirtha, chairperson of the textbook review committee told Deccan Herald, “We have reviewed textbooks of classes from 6th to 10th standard. We were asked to look at controversial parts that hurt the sentiments of certain communities and revise them. So, we have reviewed it holistically and submitted a report.”

“In every chapter, Baraguru Ramachandrappa review committee (2017) has added a lot of things which were not present in the original text.”

He alleged that at certain places, Baraguru has changed the style of writing, “as if to push for a certain ideology or to express his own personal opinion.”

“That is, he has not only modified the facts but also the way in which the topic is presented. We have noted this in the submitted report,” Chakrathirtha said to the newspaper.

The final report was submitted to the government a few weeks ago. It is yet to be made public.

But Rohith Chakrathirtha has hinted at paths that will be removed including glorification of Tippu Sultan and a section from chapter called rise of new religions.

“There is a chapter on the emergence of Buddhism and Jainism. In the beginning, there were two reason there were two pages that outlined the reasons. They are just fiction. There was no historical evidence for the claims made. We have brought the government’s attention to this,” he said.

According to DH, the section that Chakrathirtha is referring to says, “Why did new religions emerge?”

Karnataka government to remove textbook content that hurt feelings of Brahmins. In 2020, the BJP government deleted the section following a complaint by the Brahmin development board. The change is already reflected in the 2021 social science textbook.

Now, the textbook committee’s recommendation to the remove them has validated the government’s decision and made it official.

The textbook review committee headed by writer Rohith Chakrathirtha was formed in September 2021. Questions were raised concerning his credentials.

When the newspaper asked about his qualifications, he replied, “I don’t think it’s necessary because the government has chosen me based on certain parameters.”

“The government has not told me,” Chakrathirtha replied when asked what are those parameters?

Apart from deletions, there will be some additions too. Chapters on Ahom dynasty that ruled the northeast of India, Kashmir valley’s Karkota dynasty will be included.

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