Gujarat Chief Minister Shri Narendra Modi has written to Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh against the malafide intensions on the part of National Council for Education Research and Training (NCERT) to create prejudice in the minds of the children about the Government of Gujarat and the people of Gujarat. The political science textbook for the students of Class IX, published by the NCERT contains a news collage and write-up under the chapter ?Democratic Politics? purporting to give information about the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC).
In his letter dated July 10, Shri Modi requested the Prime Minister to intervene personally for withdrawal of the malafide write-up from the textbook. ?I am writing this letter to you because of the faith I have in you, and because I hope that you would rise above the petty politics and take up this issue seriously with NCERT immediately,? he said in the letter.
While appreciating the new approach of NCERT of linking the children'slife at school with their life outside the school, making departure from the legacy of bookish learning, it must be mentioned that the NCERT guided by the Textbook Development Committee has tried to misguide or mislead the young minds of the students by incorporating such paragraphs in the textbook under the guise of imparting education, about the role of NHRC, indirectly making imputations against the Government of Gujarat. ?The news collage contained on the said page and the write-up in the said paragraph would certainly give an adverse impression against the State of Gujarat in the minds of young students. Had there been a bonafide intention on the part of the NCERT to impart the information about the role of NHRC, it would have narrated the functions of the NHRC as contained in Protection of Human Rights Act, and also given other instances where the NHRC had played an important role,? the letter said.
The letter further said, ?Highlight of the riot cases of Gujarat in the said paragraph clearly smacks of the malafide intention on the part of the NCERT to create prejudice in the minds of children against the functionaries of the State Government. The NCERT could not and should not have orchestrated the voice of so called Human Rights Organisations and media by stating that the State Government was not serious about pursuing these cases or catching the culprits, more particularly when most of the cases relating to riots are still pending in various courts of Gujarat as well as in Supreme Court for adjudication.?
Shri Modi said many incidents of alleged human rights violation have happened in many states. For example, atrocities against dalits in Bihar, human rights crises in Kashmir, human rights violation in Uttar Pradesh, etc. ?Why such incidents, which happened in other states, have not been cited as examples? Why no incident from UP and Bihar, which top the list of human rights violation cases, have not been mentioned? Why no example of custodial death cases, atrocities against women and children, atrocities against dalits, bonded labour, etc have not been mentioned? One should be na?ve to believe that Gujarat figured in random selection,? the letter said adding that the NCERT, being a responsible institution of Central Government, was expected to behave in a more responsible and balanced manner especially while imparting education to the young students.
The letter said the textbooks prepared for school children should not have any religious or political bias. ?Textbooks should be used only as a medium to impart good education and knowledge and not as a vehicle for propaganda against any particular state, its government and people. I am sure, as a scholar, you would appreciate the need for unbiased education and the need for preparation of textbooks accordingly,? Shri Modi said.