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       Wednesday, August 16, 2006

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India Independence Day gift from NCERT - Text Books praising Congress critical of BJP and America

OffStumped For All Things Right of Center, Bringing a Right of Centre Reality Check to Indian Politics, News Media Reporting and Opinion through Blogs and Podcasts.


Well well well, its business as usual in India after the 200 deaths in the Mumbai Serial Commuter Train Bomb Blasts when Pakistan Sponsored Islamo Fascisct Terrorism struck India. Nothing exemplifies the business as usual atmosphere in the country than the latest political controvery to hit the wires. This time it is the National Council for Education Research and Training, NCERT, that obscure tax payer sponsored bureaucracy sitting in the left of center shadowy alleys of New Delhi's academia which has released new text books. Why a central bureaucracy with no accountability to local communities or local governments should prescribe syllabi is another matter for debate, but first a look at Offstumped's research of the specific new textbooks prescribed by NCERT for Political Science lessons to Classes IX and XI.

The inspiring force behind this work is Yogendra Yadav of the Affirmative Action fame who also curiously was behind the nation wide opinion poll released by The Hindu last week which showed Sonia Gandhi and the Manmhohan Singh lead UPA Government's ratings improving. While it is only a fool who would posit much faith in Opinion Polls in India's mercurial electoral politics, the conflict of interests between Yogendra Yadav the pollster and Yogendra Yadav the state sponsored textbook writer are all but glaring.

Offstumped has extensively reviewed all the chapters of the new Political Science Textbooks for Classes IX and XI thanks to a commendable job on the part of the NCERT in leveraging technology and making available all the chapters as electronically downloadable PDF files.

It must also be said that the NCERT textbooks have come a long way since the days of drab unicolor textbooks with the current generation visually appealing textbooks with their informal real world example oriented narrative.

While the NCERT effort scores high on readability and overall reader experience, Yogendra Yadav and his cabal of left wing JNU bred psuedo intellectual fellow textbook writers have put Noam Chomsky to shame with their subtle injection of their political world view and left of center political agenda.

The Class IX Political science text book for example is unapologetically anti-american in its real world example. In a rather shameless and brazen manner the textbook in instance after instance is replete with controversial issues with a clear anti-american slant. It begins with unsubstantiated innuendo on American involvement in a coup in Chile back in the 1970s, that a text book should of this nature targeting an impressionable student age group should rely on rumors rather than facts is galling. The same chapter has also a glaring cartoon lampooning Paul Wolfowitz for his role in the Pentagaon planning the Iraq War and his subsequent ascendancy to the World Bank. In what is completely unbalanced judgement on Paul Wolfowitzs track record at the World Bank the text book does more to induce Anti-American sentiment in the young students than to make the political point it was seeking to make. The text book goes even further later on when it goes into factually incorrect statements about the UN Security Council not authorizing the use of force on Iraq and the UN Inspectors concluding there were no weapons of mass destruction before the war. The entire narrative is extremely one sided and sounds more intent on making a political point on the so called illegality of the Iraq war more than educating the student. The rest of the book has cartoon after cartoon taking off on the American role in Iraq. This whole style of using current events which are yet to be judged by history as the frame of reference to educate young minds is highly questionable. Textbooks for basic education which is formative in nature should be based on content which is established history and where the narrative has element of posterity to it. To introduce contemporary issues which are still being debated and the last word on which has not yet been told, and make them the basis for educating the students without providing a balanced view only goes to prejudice young minds rather than educate them.

Another particular area of contentious debate is the reference to Guantanamo Bay with a emotive letter from a girl to Tony Blair. That the text book chose to frame the debate on a complex issue like what terrorists with no state affiliations should have in this one sided imbalanced manner especially when the issue is still unresolved goes to show the deep left of center agenda that was at the heart of this text book writing exercise.

The rest of the book is apalling in the manner in which it has subtly highlighted the Congress' achievements and the socialist agenda of OBC reservations. Chapter 5 for example in the Class IX textbook describes the mandal commission decision by the VP Singh government in such astonishing detail that it is mind numbing. That Yogendra Yadav chose to pick this most contentious of issues for such elaborate discussion goes to show Yogendra Yadav is no honest intellectual that he attempted to position himself in the recent anti-reservation debate. The text book describes the 1984 landslide victory of the Congress as a historic moment in the history of India Democracy. The text book also pays tribute to the Manmohan Singh Congress lead UPA Government with the color picture of Singh being sworn by president APJ Abdul Kalam as the Prime Minister. Both the textbooks are replete with references to Nehru, Indra Gandhi, Rajiv Gandhi and of course Manmohan Singh. The mandal messiah VP Singh also finds mention, thanks to Yogendra Yadav.

What is amazing is the absolute silence on the Vajpayee or Narasimha Rao governments. The two governments which really transformed India on the economic front. The only time the textbooks refer to the Vajpayee lead BJP, NDA Government when it refers to the Jaswant Singh, Yashwant Sinha budget rollbacks. The malintent of the textbook writers is very clear when the Gujarat Riots are elaborated in an entire page on the importance of the National Human Rights Commision, NHRC. The text books maintain an eery silence on the Anti-Sikh Delhi riots in the aftermath of the Indira Gandhi assasination. The text books also completely gloss over the murder of Indian Democracy in the form of emergency with just a one sentence oblique reference to the Janata Party with no reference to the fact that it was the Congress that imposed emergency. That the text book went out of its way to pick on the United States and the Narendra Modi BJP Government in making its case on issues of democracry and human rights, while completely glossing over the anti sikh riots and the emergency goes to show the one sided, intellectually dishonest exercise the text books have come to represent.

Yogendra Yadav meanwhile under attack from the BJP defended the text books on the grounds that the text books will tell the truth in a non-partisan manner. It is clear from Offstumped's review of the text books that the non-partisan claim of Yogendra Yadav is phoney and the facts are otherwise. Yadav also claims that Political developments before and after the incidents will be elaborated, which is hardly the case. In neither in the Iraq references and nor the Gujarat has the textbook referred to facts after the incident like Narendra Modi being relected by the people of Gujarat with a thumping landslide majority which is no less than the other landslide of the 1984 congress victory which the textbook went great lengths to praise. Yogendra Yadavs claim that the textbook's contents are in sync with the NCERT objective of linking education to real world events is also not tenable as the real world events have been described in a one sided manner with a clear ulterior agenda. Yogendra Yadavs claim that major events like the emergency will be covered is plain dishonesty as Offstumped has already pointed out that the reference to emergency is one sentence and is oblique neither doing justic to the event nor to those who fought it and those who were found guilty of it. Yadav also claims that the textbooks will contain established facts from government sources which are beyond doubt. This is laughable as Offstumped pointed out the text book starts out with alleged claims of U.S. involvement in Chile based on rumours with no reference to established facts.

In summary while the Congress UPA lead Governments De-Tox campaign championed by Arjun Singh is managed to show itself in a positive light with 10 pro congress references across these text books the Yogendra Yadav lead leftist socialist JNU bred psuedo intellectual text book re-writing brigade has done right by Prakash Karat and Sitaram Yechury lead CPI-M with the heavy pro communist slant reflected in the 13 anti-american references, 9 anti-capitalist references and a whopping 17 references to pro-mandalite and pro-minority issues while beating up the BJP with negative references on 10 occassions. Where the CPI-M scored a fast one on the Congress was with the Nepalese Maoist insurgency and the CPI-ML projected as pro-democracy political forces completely sidestepping the violent insurgency and terrorist acts conducted by the Maoists as well as praising known Naxalite sympathetic groups like the PUCL in the context of human rights.

Offstumped Bottomline: The textbooks seed a leftist world view into young impressionable minds that breeds anti-american sentiments, ignores the multiple political view points in India and praises the Congress while glossing over its worst excesses. That Yogendra Yadav has been conducting Opinion Polls which have repeatedly shown the Congress doing well and Sonia Gandhi viewed favorably raises seriouses questions about Yogendra Yadavs intellectual honesty and credibility. This is not education this is congress sponsored indoctrination being conducted by the likes of Yogendra Yadav who have otherwise mastered the art of Manufacturing Consent.

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posted by Yossarin at 9:14 PM  


Krantikari said...

What else can be expected from a Congress led Government in India. These henchmen are responsible for killing of millions of Hindus and other innocent sikhs in India. But beware, people of India are not going to be fooled by there evil Ideas. The problem in Congress party is its either my way or no way attitude by a few people whose actual sirname is Supariwala but claim to be Gandhis.People of India, God is with you. Glory to the Pride of being Indian and India.

4:17 PM  

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