KCHF to challenge “saffornisation” of school text books

February 14, 2012 by  
Filed under India, Karnataka, newsletter-india, Persecution

Karnataka Komu Souharda VedikeKarnataka, February 13, 2012: Karnataka Komu Souhardha Vedike (Karnataka Communal Harmony Forum) is gearing up to fight legally and socially what it describes an apparent move by the BJP government to ‘saffronise’ social sciences textbooks of class V and VIII from next academic year. The textbooks, according to the vedike, will go for printing in the next three days. The government is spending about Rs 14 crore on printing of the new textbooks.

“While the BJP government has exhibited its overt communal agenda in ways more than one since its came to power in Karnataka, the saffonization of textbooks is their way of covert communalization. The draft of the textbooks, copies of which available with the vedike, is a clear example of BJP’s way of spreading Sangh Parivar ideology,” KL Ashok, general secretary of the vedike said while speaking to reporters here on Saturday. He also read out excerpts from the draft copies in the press meet.

Referring to topics on Dasa and Vachana Sahitya mentioned in the textbooks, Ashok said there was no mention of Purandara Dasa, regarded as father of Dasa Sahitya, or Basavanna with regard to Vachana Sahitya. “Akka Mahadevi’s birth place Uduthadi has been mentioned as a place in Thirthahalli taluk in Shimoga district, whereas it is in Shikaripura taluk of the same district. Such factual and historical gaffes are too many to count,” he added.

On the Baba Budangiri issue in Chikmagalur on which the vedike has had a long standing battle with the state government, Ashok said, “The draft text says the hill is home to ‘Datta Peeta’ in clear violation of Supreme Court’s judgement which in late 1990s had ordered a status quo on the issue. We are planning to take up the issue legally and preparations are afoot to translate the text into English for the benefit of the court,” Ashok said.

In addition, the vedike with help from historians and writers is also contemplating to stage dharnas in front of the house of Vishveswar Hegde Kageri, minister for primary and secondary education in Bangalore shortly. “Litterateurs including U R Ananthamurthy, and Chandrashekar Kambhar have expressed their support. The state government must withdraw these textbooks or face protests from the vedike,” he added.

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