Hyderabad: After a day of outrage over an 8th class social studies question bank for portraying the image of a terrorist holding a gun in one hand and the Quran in the other, VGS publishers has released an apology letter.
The education department of the government of Telangana has also clarified that the question bank was not from the prescribed textbook set by them.
In the letter to the school education department, the director of school education Telangana, Syed Omer Jaleel stated that as per the instruction of the secratary, Telangana has examined the issue.
Jaleel added that post examination, it was discovered that the image cited is not from prescribed state government for class 8th social studies textbook.
Moreover, the director of school education clarified that the image going viral on social media raising objection to the depictions is actually from a private publishing house – VGS publishers.
In conclusion he submitted the report that the objectionable photograph is not from the government publication, and also requested the government to initiate appropriate action against the responsible publication as per law.
The image is a part of a series of other images present in a chapter titled ‘National Movement – the last phase 1919-1947’. While the remaining images portray Indian freedom fighters like Gandhi and Nehru as resisting the British empire’s rule, this image stands out.
The image of the “terrorist” not only does not fit in with the rest of the chapter but also cunningly clubs Islam and terrorism as one and the same. This is made worse by the fact that the front of the study material reads “prepared as per government revised textbook.”
The study material in question has been published by VGS publishers who prepare the same based on recommendations given by the state government.
The publisher in question released a public apology on Sunday for hurting sentiments and said that it was not intentional.
Further in the apology letter the publication stated that they have decided to delete the picture and reprint the books. “We are also in the process of collecting back unsold copies from the market to avoid any further inconvenience to anyone,” VGS publishers stated.