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Nehru’s exclusion from text books

This refers to your thought-provoking article “BJP trying to erase Nehru’s Memories” (May 14). Changing or rewriting Indian history has long been a source of controversy and political debate. It is surprising that the new Social Science textbook for Class VIII in schools of Rajasthan does not mention Nehru either as a freedom fighter or as the first Prime Minister of independent India who introduced Panchayati Raj system. He implemented the principles of diplomacy and foreign policy and not only played important role in getting India independence but also contributed in the freedom struggle of other countries. Earlier also the BJP government removed the works of Western poets including John Keats, Thomas Hardy, S. Eliot, Edward Lear and William Blake from the Class VIII curriculum, and replaced them with lesser known writers with a more regional flavour. The new poems include My First Visit To The Bank, The Brave Lady of Rajasthan, Chittor, Sangita The Brave Girl and The Glory of Rajasthan. It is not fair on the part of BJP whose ideological bankruptcy has stooped to such levels of erasing the country’s first Prime Minister from school history books. Whitewashing Nehru altogether by deleting inconvenient truths is tantamount to historical vandalism. Erasing Nehru’s memory and his contribution from the nation’s collective conscience should get back in the history books otherwise the young minds will get a different taste of history.

Vinod C. Dixit

(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)

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