Section on Article 370 in NCERT textbook

Less than a year after Article 370 was scrapped, the event has been included in the National Council of Educational Research and Training’s newly revised political science textbook for Class 12, while a section on the different kinds of separatist politics in Jammu and Kashmir has been removed.

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The Central Board of Secondary Education has also issued additional material for the Class 12 political science syllabus this year, including a section claiming that the Modi government led a shift from “caste and religion-based politics to development and governance oriented politics,” as well as sections on Niti Aayog, Deen Dayal Upadhyay and Sardar Patel and updates to a section on India's nuclear policy.

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The revised version of “Politics in India since Independence,” one of NCERT’s texts for Class 12, has a February 2020 reprinting date although it was only made available on the NCERT site this week, and most political science teachers are yet to see the book. 

J&K’s governments

In a chapter on ‘Regional Aspirations,’ a section titled ‘2002 and Beyond’ has been added. It lays out the history of coalition governments in Jammu and Kashmir between 2002 and 2014, the death of Mufti Mohammed Sayeed and his daughter becoming the first woman Chief Minister of the State. “During the tenure of Mahbooba Mufti, major acts of terrorism, mounting external and internal tensions were witnessed,” it says, adding that President’s rule was imposed in June 2018 after the BJP withdrew its support to the Mufti government. 

On 5 August 2019, Article 370 was abolished by the Jammu & Kashmir Reorganisation Act 2019 and the State was constituted into two Union Territories, viz., Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh,” says the new textbook. “Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh are living examples of plural society in India. Not only are there diversities of all kind (religious, cultural, linguistic, ethnic and tribal), but there are also divergent political and developmental aspirations, which have been sought to be achieved by the latest Act.”

Article 370 created separatist mindset: Centre

The older version of the book had a section on ‘Separatism and Beyond,’ which has now been removed. It had laid out different strands of separatist politics in Kashmir since 1989, including those who wanted a separate Kashmiri nation, those who wanted Kashmir to merge with Pakistan, those who wanted greater autonomy within the Indian Union and the demands for intra-State autonomy from the regions of Jammu and Ladakh.

Reduced CBSE syllabus

NCERT textbooks are used by school boards in at least 12 States and Union Territories, apart from the CBSE. However, the 30% reduction in CBSE syllabus due to coronavirus (COVID-19) means that the entire chapter on ‘Regional Aspirations,’ including the newly revised Kashmir sections, will not be taught this year.

However, CBSE Class 12 students have also been given additions to their Political Science syllabus by way of material meant to supplement the NCERT textbook. This includes a section on Kashmir.

CBSE to release reduced syllabus in a month

“It was against this special status of the State of Jammu and Kashmir that there was a clarion call in political circles for abrogation of Articles 370 and Article 35A with the propagation of the principle of ‘Ek Vidhan, Ek Nishan, Ek Pradhan’ referring to one Constitution, one Flag and one Head of the State/Government respectively. Others equated Article 370 and 35A with ‘constitutionally recognised separatism,’ it said, adding that the bill for abolition of Article 370 was presented to Parliament by the BJP-led NDA government which was showing its commitment to the integration of Kashmir in India, a part of its election manifesto.

CBSE students will also learn about Niti Aayog, as well as NDA III and IV. “A major change in Indian politics after 2014 is the shift from caste and religion based politics to development and governance oriented politics. With its pre-intended goal Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas, the NDA III Government started several socio-economic welfare schemes to make development and governance accessible to the masses,” it said. “The success of these schemes could be seen from the results of 2019 Lok Sabha elections where the voters across States – castes, classes, communities, gender and regions — brought back the issues of development and governance to the centre stage under the BJP led NDA Government, characterizing the current change with ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas and Sabka Vishwas.’ ”

Nuclear policy

The section on India’s nuclear policy has also got some additional material, which reads, “But in view of contemporary regional security challenges, the present government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has made it clear that the policy of no first use can be reviewed and changed in accordance with India’s regional and national security.”

Other additional material which CBSE students will learn this year includes sections on “Patel and National Integration”, “Jay Prakash Narayan and Total Revolution”, “Deendayal Upadhyay and Integral Humanism”, and “Ram Manohar Lohia and Socialism”.

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Printable version | Apr 11, 2021 2:30:51 PM |

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