Chandigarh: Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Monday directed the Punjab School Education Board (PSEB) to continue with the existing history textbooks for Classes XI and XII until the expert group completes the reviewing process.
This comes after the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) announced to launch “a massive struggle” to force the state government to “apologise to the Khalsa Panth for deliberate and persistent insults of the great Guru Sahibaan in 10+2 history books of PSEB.”
The directive has been issued in view of the need for clarity on the syllabus for the students as they were almost in the middle of their academic year, read a statement.
“The expert group of eminent historians was constituted by the state government on May 11 in response to the concerns raised in certain quarters regarding alleged errors and discrepancies in the syllabus of History for Classes XI and XII. The Group is chaired by professor Kirpal Singh and comprises Dr JS Grewal, Dr Indu Banga, Dr Pirthipal Singh Kapur along with Dr Balwant Singh Dhillon and Dr Inderjeet Singh Gogoani, both representatives of SGPC,” the statement added.
According to an official spokesperson, the Chief Minister had asked the Education Minister to ensure a comprehensive review by the expert group, taking into consideration all the complaints and suggestions received earlier.
Amarinder Singh had also directed to ensure that individual chapters of history books are not released by PSEB, and only a textbook properly vetted and approved by the expert group and the government is published after proper diligence.
The spokesperson added that Amarinder Singh-led government was “fully committed to ensure that students in the state receive proper instruction in history.”
The Chief Minister directed that the history taught to the children should be “factually correct and backed by evidence, without any dilution in the coverage of Punjab and Sikh history.”
In line with this, the expert group had been asked to exercise oversight on the entire syllabus and contents of textbooks prescribed for History by the Punjab School Education Board, and to ensure that there are no factual discrepancies in the textbooks.