The revision of school textbooks, which is overseen by the state government’s Textbook Revision Committee, which is chaired by Rohith Chakrathirtha, has politicised education in an unprecedented way.
While the opposition accuses the state administration of being ideologically motivated in its modification, the latter defends its stance, claiming it was carried out with a “corrective attitude” in mind. It has sparked widespread outrage across the state. Several progressive philosophers, litterateurs, and seers of notable mutts oppose the plan to alter school textbooks, while one section explains the reform in favour of the government.
The Chakrathirtha-led committee (which has since been dissolved) rewrote 83 chapters in Kannada and Social Science courses from Classes 1 to 10 of the state syllabus, which were later accepted by the state government.
While Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai announced on Friday evening that they were open to re-revisioning textbooks, despite nearly 80% of them having been printed and 66% of them having been distributed to schools across Karnataka, the need for revising school textbooks – particularly Kannada and Social Science – is being questioned.
As things stand now, BC Nagesh, the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education, has declared that re-revision would be considered after a few pontiffs objected to the material in Class 9 textbooks on the 12th century social reformer Basavanna. The committee was formed to carry out the objective established by the education minister and individuals with vested interests to discredit Basavanna’s social reforms, according to seers from numerous Lingayat mutts in the region, including Chidananda Swamiji of Hosa Mutt.