"There are complaints that the government is attempting to purposefully vitiate the curriculum. These are basically subtle attempts to discredit other religions"
The number of complaints from Karnataka on attempts to “vitiate the curriculum” is on the rise in recent times, said Cyriac Thomas, member of the National Commission for Minority Educational Institutions (NCMEI).
Speaking to The Hindu on the sidelines of a State-level seminar on ‘Combating saffronisation of education and suppression of the subaltern voice’ here on Saturday, he said the other States from where such complaints had been received are Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh, incidentally both ruled by Bharatiya Janta Party governments like Karnataka.
“There are complaints that the government is attempting to purposefully vitiate the curriculum. These are basically subtle attempts to discredit other religions,” he explained.
These complaints about influencing textbook content were coming only for the State syllabi, not for the central board curricula, he added. However, he refused to elaborate on the complaints and added that the commission was looking into the matter.
But, Mr. Thomas said there was also a possibility that the Chief Minister or the Education Minister may not be aware of the attempts. “It could have been done at the officer-level,” he said.
Asked if the commission could intervene in such cases with the representations it had received, he said the NCMEI’s powers were limited to bringing the issue to the notice of the highest authorities in the State or country. “If, even after repeated requests, the State government does not heed to them, we can write to the Governor of that State, or even the Prime Minister or the President. Our powers end there,” he said.