Reviving Indian Textbooks: The Gandhi Parivar files

A few weeks back, we had launched a campaign: #SaveOurChildren. The thought emerged from the HRD Minister’s speech in Parliament where she read passages from Class IV and Class VI textbooks, approved by the previous UPA regime, which were factually incorrect, distorted history, and painted India in poor light with respect to the ongoing conflict with Pakistan on Kashmir.

There have always been murmurs about how several facets of the history, geography, economics, and civics we teach our children are written by agenda merchants, pop historians, and establishment professionals, who made careers out of carving out a neo-Anglican narrative, which constantly and purposely demeans the Indian dharmic narrative. Hence, we launched #SaveOurChildren, asking all our readers and people at large, to send to us such cases of distortion.

We received an overwhelming number of entries, on a variety of topics. Eventually, we will make a collection of these problems with our children’s books and we will then petition the Union Minister for Human Resource Development Mrs. Smriti Irani to:

  1. Verify if such passages indeed exits in our textbooks
  2. Verify if such textbooks are still being used
  3. Get these references fact-checked
  4. Issue corrections wherever needed
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Today we publish the second tranche of such cases sent to us by readers. It is not surprising to see our political leaders of the past feature prominently in our History textbooks. We have often read stories about Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, Sardar Vallabh-bhai Patel, Dr Ambedkar etc. But as our readers submitted their findings to us, we were perplexed to see the mention of some current, active political leaders too.

From the submissions, it appears the Gandhi family, specifically Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi, all of whom are very much contemporary politicians, have found their way into various books used by students at different levels in schools:

As per a reader, “Sonia Gandhi – an idol of renunciation” is an essay in a book called “English Essays and Letter Writing”, which he claims was recommended/suggested by the school.

Another reader says a glowing tribute to Rahul Gandhi was found in a 5th Std CBSE text book. The book is apparently an English comprehension book prescribed by several CBSE schools across India.

Even Priyanka Gandhi finds a mention in school books, says another reader. He says that a profile of Priyanka Gandhi under “star track” was found in a CBSE school book, Grade 4, Gulf Edition.

If the above is true, action must be taken to ensure that this political propaganda is stopped at the earliest. Once the campaign is over, we shall send over these claims by various people to the HRD ministry so that they can verify that these are indeed real and then take appropriate action. Till then, you can send your entries :

Click their pictures and share with us:

On our Twitter handle @OpIndia_com

or

On our Facebook page

or

Email to us at [email protected]

or

If you wish to remain anonymous, use file sharing sites like these.

Append these social media posts with the hashtag #SaveOurChildren. Do not forget to mention these details along with your submission: The name of the state, the name of the board / agency (CBSE, ICSE, NCERT, State Board etc) and the class/division the book is from.

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