MUMBAI: A year after maps in school textbooks published by the Maharashtra State Bureau of Textbook Production and Curriculum Research (Balbharti) depicted Arunachal Pradesh as part of China and marked out Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (PoK) as a separate territory, the new Class 6 history textbooks are once again error-ridden. Maps show Kanheri caves — located inside the Sanjay Gandhi National Park at Borivli — to be under water.
Delhi, the capital of the country, is shown on the eastern bank of river Yamuna (most of Delhi is on the western bank) and the Mediterranean Sea has been depicted as a land mass.
Academicians pointed out several glaring errors in at least six maps published in these textbooks. While in a chapter on the ancient kingdoms in south India, on page 36, the Kanheri caves built during the reign of the Mauryan and Kushana emperors, have been marked off the coast of Mumbai, a chapter on India and Asia trade routes, shows the Silk Route passing through the Mediterranean Sea, which is marked out to be a land mass, coloured in white, while other water bodies have been marked in blue. More than 17 lakh students of t he Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education (MSBSHSE) will refer to these textbooks based on the new syllabus for Class 6.
Experts said the state government allowed the same people, who were responsible for the embarrassing mistakes in the Class 10 geography textbooks in 2014, to work on these textbooks.
“At least two of the members from the board of studies, which was sacked for making mistakes in the geography textbook in 2014, were again appointed to prepare the new textbooks ,” said Vi dyadh ar Am rite, retired professor of Sathaye College, Vile Parle, and a member of the Mumbai Geography Teachers’ Association.
“It is shocking that when the BJP was an opposition party, they had called for strict action against these people, but now they are hiring the same people.”
Sunil Magar, director of Balbharti, t old Hindustan Times the mistakes pointed out by the academicians will be put forth before a committee.
“The committee that was i nvolved i n pre paring t he textbook will take a look at the alleged mistakes and we will take the next course of action depending on their decision,” said Magar.
“I can’t comment on why the same members involved in last time’s geography textbook controversy were appointed to the committee for the new Class 6 textbook. The state government appoints the members.”