Amid backlash, Karnataka govt orders eight changes to revised textbooks – The News Minute

As per the latest order, the line which said Ambedkar is the architect of the Indian Constitution, besides sections on social reformer Basavanna and poet Kuvempu will be reintroduced to the textbooks.
In the wake of the opposition from prominent writers, academics, and religious and political leaders among others, the Karnataka government has issued an order confirming eight changes to the state’s revised school textbooks. The changes were made after a slew of objections were raised against the revisions made by the government-appointed Karnataka Textbooks Revision Committee. The panel, headed by controversial right-wing orator Rohith Chakrathirtha, had come under severe criticism for dropping the works of Dalit and women writers, besides lessons on historical figures and social reformers including Mahatma Gandhi and Dr BR Ambedkar, from school textbooks.

TNM had earlier reported an exhaustive list of changes introduced in the school textbooks by the Chakrathirtha committee, as compiled by researcher and writer Harshakumar Kugwe. The list showed that several lessons by Dalit as well as progressive, reformist writers, on topics like communalism, caste, gender equality and social justice, were dropped. Chapters on reforms such as the eradication of untouchability, gender discrimination and child trafficking were also removed. The revision also included the removal of significant lessons on Mahatma Gandhi, Dr BR Ambedkar and Jawaharlal Nehru, besides the introduction of lessons on RSS ideologues Vinayak Damodar Savarkar and KB Hedgewar.
Opposition to the revised textbooks came from various quarters including former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda, who wrote to Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai questioning the removal of the photograph of Kuvempu and sections on the social reformer Basavanna. He also questioned the decision to remove a line that credited Ambedkar as the architect of the Indian Constitution, as well as the removal of sections on the services of Siddaganga Mutt (of Lingayats) and the Adi Chunchungiri Mutt (of Vokkaligas), and on regional saints like Akka (Mahadevi), Kanaka (Dasa), Purandara (Dasa) and Sharif (Sishunalla).
Now, the state’s Education Department has ratified eight changes to the newly revised textbooks, mostly in response to the opposition raised by Deve Gowda in his letter to the Chief Minister. The Karnataka Textbook Society will distribute the corrected portions in the form of a free booklet in all schools.

List of changes made to the revised school textbooks.
Class 9 Social Science: The term Samvidhana Shilpi (Architect of the Constitution), describing Dr BR Ambedkar’s role in drafting the Indian Constitution, was removed from the chapter Namma Samvidhana (Our Constitution) by the Chakrathirtha committee. The term will be reintroduced.
Class 7 Social Science: A lesson on Bhakti sect and Sufi saints will be restored.

Class 9 Social Science: A lesson on Bhakti sect, sections on Purandaradasa and Kanakadasa will be added.
Class 7 Kannada: Gombe Kalisuva Neethi (Lessons taught by a doll), a Kannada poem wrongly attributed to RN Jayagopal, will now carry the name of its author, Chi Udayashankar.
Class 6 Social Science: In the chapter Namma Hemmeya Rajya Karnataka (Karnataka, our pride), the contributions of Siddaganga mutt and Adichunchunagiri mutt will be reintroduced.
Class 7 Social Science: In the chapter Mysuru Matthu Ithara Samsthaanagalu (Mysore and other states), the details of Surapura Nayakas will be reintroduced.

Class 9 Social Science: In the chapter Bharathada Matha Parivarthakaru (India’s social reformers), the details about Basavanna will be reintroduced.
Class 7 Social Science: In the chapter Karnataka Rajya Ekikarana Hagu Gadivivadhagalu (Karnataka State Integration and Boundaries), pictures of ‘Rashtrakavi’ (National Poet) Kuvempu and Huilgol Narayanarao will be reintroduced.
Class 4 Social Science: In the chapter Prathiyobbaru Vishista (Everyone is unique), the details about Kuvempu which were left out will be reintroduced. A line which read, “With the encouragement of many, he went on to be considered a great poet,” will be added to the text.
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