Christian group threatens stir over textbook error

June 22, 2017 by  
Filed under India, newsletter-india

Gujarat, June 22, 2017: The Christian community in Gujarat has threatened to launch a state-wide agitation and also to take legal recourse if Gujarat State School Textbook Board (GSSTB) fails to withdraw the controversial class IX Hindi (second language) textbook in two days. In one chapter of the textbook, the adjective ‘hevaan’, meaning demon, is used before the name of Jesus Christ. This came into public notice on June 8.

A six-member group from the Gujarat United Christian Forum for Human Rights (GUCFHR), led by Archbishop Thomas Macwan, met the GSSTB executive president, Nitin Pethani, on Wednesday. The group asked Pethani why, despite three representations by the Christian body, the GSSTB is yet to take action or even tender a public apology for the error.

GUCFHR spokesperson Fr Vinayak Jhadav told TOI: “On June 13, vide a memorandum, we had demanded that GSSTB tender a public apology for the controversial error, which has hurt Christian sentiments. The second demand was to initiate, within 10 days, the process of replacing the textbook that had the error. We also informed the GSSTB that even the context of the sentence in which the word ‘hevaan’ appears is wrong,” Fr Jhadav said.

“The third demand was for taking stringent action against government officials and those responsible for proof-reading the texts,” Fr Jadhav said.

Pethani, on the other hand, claimed that GUCFGHR was shown the report which has resolved to replace the word ‘hevaan’ with ‘bhagwan’ and an errata is to be published in an upcoming edition of ‘Sikshan-Parikshan’ magazine.

“The DTP operator has been fired for now,” Pethani said. “Whether to blacklist experts that were engaged for writing the textbooks is a matter for a special committee of experts.”

Pethani also told TOI that GSSTB had already apologized for the error, in the media.

– times of india

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