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New textbook says Lord Ram destroyed Ravana-sponsored ‘terrorism’

Nearly five lakh students of classes IX and X in Gujarat have appeared for a voluntary state government-endorsed examination based on a textbook...

Ahmedabad |
January 7, 2009 3:07:01 am

Nearly five lakh students of classes IX and X in Gujarat have appeared for a voluntary state government-endorsed examination based on a textbook,which reinterprets Lord Ram as a fighter of terrorism sponsored by a neighbouring country’s king,Ravana.

A section of activists and educationists have taken exception to this examination,alleging that it attempts to superimpose religious mythology on present day challenges.

State Education Minister Ramanlal Vora,on his part,has claimed that no such examination has actually been endorsed or conducted in Gujarat. But an official letter from the minister’s own office is being used by the examination authority of Bhartiya Sanskruti Gyan Pariksha (Examination of Indian Culture Knowledge) as proof that the state government endorsed this examination.

The textbook also flaunts an endorsement by Chief Minister Narendra Modi inside the back cover.

The exam is conducted by a Haridwar-based religious body,Akhil Vishwa Gayatri Parivar. The first chapter of the examination textbook,which is available in both Gujarati and Hindi,is Loknayak Shree Ram,Jemne Jivanbhar Atankvad Same Sangharsh Karyo (People’s Leader Shree Ram who fought against terrorism all through his life). It talks about terrorism sponsored by King Ravana and his accomplices,who also established their terror cells in different parts of the country.

Noted educationist and former professor at the Jawaharlal Nehru University in Delhi,Ghanshyam Shah,told Newsline: “If the state is directing the schools to promote the examination of a private group,it is very dangerous and against the spirit of the constitution. History and mythology are different things. Drawing a parallel between mythology and the present situation is childish and shows no understanding of statecraft. And a state minister promoting such private examination is very objectionable.”

Human rights activist Raju Solanki has shot off a letter to Vora,asking him to cancel the government circular supporting the examination.

“To tackle terrorism,we need an inclusive policy and inclusive development along with a scientific temperament,not such mythology-based lessons,” he said.

Dr Rajendra Kumar,the examination convener in Gujarat from Akhil Vishwa Gayatri Parivar,affirmed that the state education minister has given his consent to hold the examination in schools across the state. That apart,the minister has even issued a circular to higher officials of the education department,asking them to ensure that the maximum number of students appeared for this examination.

District education officers of Surat and Ahmedabad confirmed to this paper that such a voluntary exam was conducted in schools.

Kumar also said that this year,around 40 lakh students across the country including 5 lakh students from Gujarat alone,appeared for it. Kumar claimed that even non-Hindu students appeared for it.

Excerpts from the chapter

* The powerful king of a neighbouring country,Ravana,had established terror cells in different parts of India and was the sole leader of those cells.

* In Mithila region,Ravana’s agents were Maricha,Subahu and Tadka. Whereas,in South India,his agents were Shoorpankha,Khar-Dushan and Trishara. People of the country were scared of their terror operations within the country.

* To fight terrorism,Lord Ram neither sought help from any big country nor urged them. He,instead,consulted the Rishis (religious gurus) of India.

* Initially,in consultation with Maharshi Vishwamitra,he killed Maricha,Subahu and Tadka. However,this was only the first step in the war against terror.

* He then started demolishing the terror camps one by one. He killed Khar-Dushan and Trishara in Dandakaranya along with their 14,000 associates. Following the recurring defeat of its sponsored terrorism,the neighbouring country was scared. So the sole master of its army,Ravana,abducted Sita,masquerading as a Sadhu.

* Lord Ram tried to pursue Ravana in vain. And war became inevitable.

* Lord Ram not only defeated the terrorists,but also eliminated terrorism completely. If the people of India,its thinkers and its rulers follow the principles of Lord Ram,terrorism can be eliminated even today.

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