Maharashtra to remove references on Rajiv’s failed Sri Lanka policy

Maharashtra is to remove references on former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi’s “failed Sri Lanka policy” from school textbooks.

According to The Hindu, Education Minister Vinod Tawde has said Maharashtra will make necessary changes to its school textbooks to remove all references allegedly showing former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi in poor light.

Replying to a demand raised under rule 289 in the Upper House of the Assembly on Monday, Mr. Tawde said government acknowledged the feelings of the members of the House.

“We will convey suitably to the textbook bureau about the sentiments of the members regarding this issue,” Tawde said.

The issue was raised by Congress MLC Sanjay Dutt, who claimed that there existed ‘defamatory’ references to the two former Prime Ministers in textbooks meant for standard ninth in the State School Board. The chapter in the Maharashtra Board’s History and Political Science textbooks mention both their names in reference to the infamous Bofors scandal controversy, he alleged.

“These references are an attempt to show the two leaders in poor light and must be immediately removed,” Dutt said. The demand was supported by most members of the House and acknowledged by the Education Minister.

The Youth Congress has been leading a string of protests across the State on the issue. The Congress has also earlier demanded resignation of the Minister on the issue alleging that the BJP government is trying to change the history of the country and trying to show Gandhi family in a poor light.

The Congress has alleged the textbook did not highlight the achievements of Rajiv Gandhi instead the chapters talk of “failed foreign policy in Sri Lanka and scandals in purchase of defence equipment during his tenure.” (Colombo Gazette)