New Delhi, Nov 16 (IBNS) The Central Board for Secondary Education (CBSE) on Friday admitted that school books used across the country are not monitored for content.
The statement came after leading English television news channel NDTV featured a story showing a class-VI textbook that says
meat-eaters cheat, lie and commit sex crimes.
"We only recommend books for Class-IX onwards. Books are chosen by individual schools. There is no monitoring of content of school
books," CBSE chief Vineet Joshi told NDTV on Friday.
The class-VI book is titled 'New Healthway: Health, Hygiene Physiology, Safety, Sex Education, Games and Exercises'.
On page number 56, the book says about non-vegetarians: "They easily cheat, tell lies, they forget promises, they are dishonest and tell bad words, steal, fight and turn to violence and commit sex crimes."
On the same page, the book credits the tastiness of meat by saying: "It is the waste products which largely produce the flavour of meat."
The book was published by reputed firm S Chand that also prints texts used in hundreds of schools in the country.
"Since 1985, there have been concerns about what has been propagated by private publishers. An excellent report has been presented to the government but no action has been taken since," said Janaki Rajan of the Faculty of Education in Jamia University.
She said a report had been prepared in 2005 by academics which had raised concerns about textbooks printed by private publishers. Rajan was a part of the committee that prepared the report.
The same expert committee had also advocated a National Textbook Council to oversee and approve content but the proposal was turned down by states earlier this year.
"The CBSE recommends some publishers and not particularly books. It is a great way for us to actually see whether teachers are reading the books and teaching what the books say," Annie Koshy, principal of St Mary's school in New Delhi, was quoted as saying by the TV channel.
The book in question makes several more bizarre statements such as it has lauded the Japanese for their vegetarian diet, which it says, leads to a longer life span. The book completely ignores the fact that Japan is known for sushi and seafood.
"They are vegetarians and live longer than most other peoples. The generous use of green leafy vegetables, soya beans and grams has
helped the people to maintain vigour, strength and endurance throughout the centuries," the book says. There is no mention of the fish in Japanese diet.
The book also advocates marriage for girls from 18 to 25.
"To get married without a bad name is a dream of every young girl," the book says.
Non-vegetarians commit sex crimes: CBSE text
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