Texts of many progressive writers dropped in Karnataka school books

Writer and former Minister B.T. Lalitha Nayak. File

Writer and former Minister B.T. Lalitha Nayak. File | Photo Credit: K. Bhagya Prakash

Several writers who have been identified with the progressive stream in Kannada literature have been dropped from the new textbooks in the process of revision.

The textbook revision committee headed by Rohith Chakrathirtha has decided to remove text of writers including Aravinda Malagatti, L. Basavaraju, B.T. Lalitha Nayak, K. Neela and others from Kannada first language textbooks of class 8 and 9. Among those who are included newly are S.L. Bhyrappa, writer and a vocal supporter of the Hindutva ideology.

Arvind Malgatti, Professor in Mysuru University. File

Arvind Malgatti, Professor in Mysuru University. File | Photo Credit: B.M. Siddalingaswamy

Major revision has been in class 9 textbook where Goruru Ramaswamy Iyengar’s prose work “Kannada Moulvi” has made way for N. Ranganatha Sharma’s “Ramarajya” and prose text “Dharma Samadrusti — Vijayanagara Shasana” has been replaced by Mr. Bhyrappa’s “Nanu Kandanthe Dr. B.G.L. Swamy.’’ While L. Basavaraju’s “Urubhanga” prose has been replaced by Gajanana Sharma’s “Channabyradevi”, Aravinda Malagatti’s “Marali Manege” poem has been replaced by S.V. Parameshwara Bhatta’s “Hemantha.” K. Neela’s prose work “Ramjan Surakumba” has been removed and Sushrutha Dodderi’s “Holebaagilu” has been added.

A section of writers and authors excluded have expressed dismay over exclusions that they said upheld Constitutional and secular values. “Ramjan Surakumba is my personal experience that is testimony to religious harmony and solidarity. I used the Hyderabad-Karnataka [Kalyana Karnataka] dialect in this prose work. It is only expected that the revision committee would not want the theme of communal harmony as per RSS agenda,” said Ms. Neela.

Prof. Malagatti said, “Academics should not be guided by a particular ideology or agenda. School curriculum should be like ever flowing water. The committee is free to revise any text, but doing so based on an ideology or agenda is dangerous to society and our education system.”

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Printable version | Jun 24, 2022 1:32:58 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/texts-of-many-progressive-writers-dropped/article65427144.ece