Karnataka govt scraps chapters on Tipu Sultan, Constitution, Islam; Congress says BJP trying to change history

The BS Yediyurappa government has come under fire for the scrapping of chapters on Tipu Sultan, Islam, Christianity and the Constitution.

After the Karnataka education department reduced syllabi of classes 1 to 10 by 30 per cent as part of efforts to cut working days during the Covid-19 pandemic, the BS Yediyurappa government has come under fire for the scrapping of chapters on Tipu Sultan, Islam, Christianity and the Constitution.

In Social Science, chapters on the Drafting Committee of the Constitution and salient features of the Constitution have been dropped for Class 7. The reason given is ‘pupils will study the same in Class 9’.

For Class 6, the chapter that deals with Christianity and Islam has been dropped stating that ‘students learn the same topics in Class 9.’ But in Class 9, chapter 1 on Christianity and Islam, teachers have been asked to only ‘summarise briefly’ since it erroneously claims student have studied the topics in class 6.

Similarly, chapter 5 of Class 7 that deals with Haider Ali, Tipu Sultan, historical places of Mysuru, and the administration of Commissioners has been reduced citing ‘The unit requires no separate class, introduced thought assignments.’

Even in Class 10, chapter 4 that deals with opposition to British rule in Karnataka, involving lessons on Haider Ali and Tipu Sultan, Rebellion of Halagali Bedas and Rebellion of Kittur Chenamma-Rayanna will be taught through ‘chart preparation.’

CONGRESS, JD(S) SLAM SYLLABI REDUCTION

The revision of these particular topics has brought strong criticism from the opposition in the state.

Karnataka Congress chief DK Shivakumar alleged the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) “wants to make their personal agenda as historical agenda and this cannot be accepted”.

“But history is history so the committee that is trying to change the text needs to be debated. You cannot change history. We will not agree and will take this up seriously,’ DK Shivakumar said.

The mention of Tipu Sultan in history books has been a constant source of friction between the BJP and the Congress in Karnataka. BJP MLAs had petitioned the Yediyurappa government to drop academic content on the ruler but a committee had overruled the plea.

Congress MLA and former minister Priyank Kharge told India Today TV, “Especially when it comes to subjects that do not fall in line with their [RSS and BJP] line of thought such as nationalism, secularism, the constitution itself in certain ways and this is nothing new.”

“The problem is if this continues, you are ensuring that the next few generations will be robbed of the idea of India, the ideals that our founding fathers stood for and more importantly. We are eroding the intellectual capital that we have built over the last 50-60 years,’ Priyank Kharge said.

JD(S) leader Tanveer Ahmed said that the agenda of the BJP is to divide the nation and to fulfil what their understanding of India is. He added, “I don’t think the BJP understands India on a broader perspective. The beautiful thing for them to do is… Christians and Muslims and historical characters of any other community do not exist at all.”

Even the Archbishop of Bengaluru, Dr Peter Machado, said that the aspect of religions which is most important for communal harmony has been removed.

“This is very sad. It looks like a prefabricated agenda that is behind this in order not to show in the limelight the contribution, the greatness and the religious tenets of Islam and Christianity,” he told India Today TV.

However, Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister Ashwathnarayan did not comment on this saying he needs to consult with the concerned department and will definitely look into this.

The controversy stirred after the Department of Public Instruction on Monday announced it had reduced syllabi by 30 per cent as part of efforts to cut working days for classes 1 to 10 to 120 days from the standard duration of around 200 days.

Source: India Today

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