Historians & the Congress party have often accused the BJP of ‘saffronisation of education’. When such accusations do the rounds, the media picks them up & highlights them vigorously hence cementing the false narrative in people’s minds that the BJP indeed adulterates Indian history.
This then leads to the Congress’s ‘de-saffronisation’ of education when it comes to power which is seen as a justified move considering how a narrative has been builtin its backdrop.
It was very commendable of Prime Minister Modi to have recently spoken about the forgotten legends of India’s Independence in his parliament speech. He accused the Congress party of ignoring the priceless contributions of souls like Damodar Hari Chapekar & his brother Balkrishna Hari Chapekar, & revolutionaries such as Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, Chandrashekhar Azad & Bhagat Singh. He was spot-on with his observation that only one family is credited for our independence by the Congress.
Here are some examples of how NCERT history textbooks have been manipulated to change the discourse –
- On page 146 in chapter ‘The Making of the National Movements: 1870-1947’ of standard 8th history textbook‘Our Pasts III (Part II)’, the Swadeshi Movement has almost been skimmed over & explained simply as a mass mobilisation & boycott of British institutions & goods.
- Revolutionaries are explained as: “Some individuals also began to suggest ‘revolutionary violence’ would be necessary to overthrow the British rule.” This is where it ends. Because of this, the sacrifice of great revolutionaries like Khudiram Bose, Prafulla Chaki, Sohan Singh Bakhana, Lala Hardayal, Rash Behari Bose, Sachindranath Sanyal, Bagha Jatin & many others is completely ignored.
- Figures like Bhagat Singh & Chandrashekhar Azad have also not received deserving mentions in the book. A passing reference is made with regards to Bhagat Singh in 8th& 10th standard NCERT textbooks &his staunchly secular credentials as well as his faith in socialism are completely omitted. What’s more is that Chandrashekhar Azad’s struggle as well as his critical role in the ‘Kakori Conspiracy’ along with Ram Prasad Bismil, Roshan Singh, Rajendra Lahri & Ashfaqullah Khan, has been mislaid in its entirety.
- Netaji Subash Chandra Bose’s legacy has also been cut down to size. His differences with Mahatma Gandhi were particularly ignored. It is a matter of utter shame that Netaji’s contributions have been so downplayed in our history books that the only names that come to mind as far as India’s independence is concerned are that of Mahatma Gandhi & Jawaharlal Nehru. Netaji’s supreme sacrifice & the INA’s role in giving India independence has been acknowledged even by Britishers. Yet, the Congress party has distorted history to keep itself & its ideology alive, & not cared about what education we’re passing onto our young children.
(Credit for facts to Akshat Bajpai & Ivan of indiafacts.org)