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Sexual morality to be part of Bengal school curriculam

KOLKATA OCT. 28 . For the first time in West Bengal's schools sex as a subject will no longer be taboo. Without compromising on traditional cultural and social mores students will now be exposed to lessons in gender relations — both the physiological aspects and moral dimension — in what the authorities have chosen to call "life-style education".

Speaking to The Hindu here today, the School Education Minister, Kanti Biswas, said that what was being contemplated "is not sex education as it might be interpreted commonly but instead studies in sexual morality, not merely the physical connotations."

The studies are expected to be introduced in the next academic year in schools under the West Bengal Board of Secondary Education.

"The syllabi of life-science and literature will be revised to incorporate life-style education," the Minister said.

The Board is to organise a workshop next month in which representatives of UNESCO and medical academics are likely to participate, to decide on the subject matter of the proposed studies.

The move has been prompted by reports and earlier studies which indicated that ignorance often resulted in vulnerability to sexual assaults.

He criticised a segment of the electronic media and the advertising world "for conveying the wrong messages on the subject to their young audiences."

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