Lessons on Bhagat Singh not removed but books will have Hedgewar speeches, says textbook society

Days after a controversy erupted over the alleged replacement of lessons on Bhagat Singh from the 10th standard Kannada textbooks with speeches of RSS ideologue K B Hegdewar, the Karnataka Textbook Society (KTBS) on Tuesday issued a statement saying that the textbooks are still in the printing stage and Bhagat Singh’s lessons have not been dropped. However, the body added that the revised textbooks also have lessons on Hedgewar.

Managing director of KTBS, Madegowda, said, “Although Bhagat Singh’s lessons have not been dropped, the updated Kannada textbooks will have lessons of Hegdewar. Only 70% of the textbooks have been printed so far and we hope to finish printing the rest soon.” A committee led by writer Rohith Chakravarthy was also formed to examine the social science textbooks of 6th- 10th standards and the Kannada textbooks of 1st-10th standards.

In the lesson titled ‘Nijavada Adarsha Purusha Yaraagabeku’ (Who is a good male role model) added in their textbook, class 10 students, who have opted for Kannada as their first language, will have Hedgewar’s speech. 

Rohit Chakrathirtha, chairman of the textbook revision committee, told The Hindu: “There was no pressure from any political party or organisation. This does not amount to imposing any organisation’s ideology on students. We have chosen Hedgewar as a writer and not on the basis of his ideology or organisation.”

The Textbook Revision Committee has maintained that it had selected the lesson on Hedgewar, not on the basis of ideology. Education Minister B.C. Nagesh had defended the recommendations of the committee.

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