Panel Working on 'Correcting' History in Textbooks, Seeks Suggestions From Stakeholders

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A parliamentary committee is working on identifying ‘unhistorical references’ in textbooks across India and correcting the ‘disproportionate representation of periods in Indian history.’ Talking to earlier, Vinay Sahasrabuddhe, BJP MP and chairman of the Ministry of Education committee in the Parliament, has said that the school textbooks in India must put the country first and the 1975 Emergency and Pokhran Nuclear Tests conducted in 1998 should also get duly representation in the Indian education.

The Department-related Parliamentary Standing Committee is now seeking suggestions from stakeholders and people in general on the issue. The teachers and students and others interested in the subject were called to submit their suggestions by June 30, however, due to the Covid-19 second wave, some experts were unable to give their suggestions. In view of this, the house panel has decided to extend the deadline for submitting the suggestions to July 15.

The source in the House panel said, “The report was almost final but later on some people came up with the request for extending the deadlines for giving suggestions. Due to the second wave many were affected and unable to contribute. In view of this, the house panel has extended the deadline to July 15. We don’t want anyone to be deprived of taking part in this exercise of importance.”

The earlier note issued by the Rajya Sabha Secretariat (Committee Section) mentioned that the reforms in school textbooks include, “removing references to unhistorical facts and distortions about our national heroes from the textbooks,” to ensure “equal or proportional references to all periods of Indian history,” and “highlighting the role of great historical women heroes, including Gargi, Maitreyi or rulers like Rani of Jhansi, Ram Channamma, Chand Bibi and Zalkari Bai.

It had asked the students, teachers, and other experts across the country to give their suggestions on the subject either in English or Hindi through email latest by July 15.

In an earlier interview to BJP Rajya Sabha MP Vinay Sahasrabuddhe had said that unhistorical references were made by a certain group of historians. He is also working towards ending the culture of functioning in silos and has proposed that NCERT and ICHR must work in collaboration for history writing, and “end domination of a certain kind of historians”.

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