An advocate, S Doraisamy, has moved the Madras High Court, challenging the deletion of the sentence "the Hindu Mahasabha and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) took a pronounced anti-Muslim stance" in the 10th standard social science textbook.
"The statements/versions appearing in the said text books is part of history and it cannot be re-written based upon some sentiments," S Doraisamy said. He submitted that the school education department had issued a circular for 'hiding' the sentence in both the Tamil and English versions of the textbook and requested the Court to quash the circular.
Admitting the plea moved as a PIL, a division bench of Justices M Sathyanarayanan and R Hemalatha directed the department to file a counter affidavit by March 19 on how the syllabus is prescribed and appraised and the procedure to be adopted for deletion of certain portions in the textbooks.
The issue pertains to an earlier plea moved by a petitioner, an RSS functionary, before a single judge of the court, seeking deletion of the sentence from the English and Tamil versions of the textbook. P Chandrasekaran, secretary of the Chennai chapter of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), had filed the petition stating that the issue was "falsely misinterpreted" and that the message was wrong.
During the course of hearing by the single judge, the government pleader had submitted that the 'objectionable portion' in the textbooks have been ordered to be deleted by the competent authority.
Now, claiming that such history cannot be deleted from books on mere sentiments of a group of people, S Doraisamy wanted the bench to quash the circular.
Opposing it, special government pleader C Munusamy contended that the issue has been analysed in detail and a 'conscious decision' has been taken by the department. Recording the submissions, the bench directed the authorities concerned to file a detailed counter affidavit.
(With inputs from PTI)