CBSE cuts Islamic empires, Cold War from board syllabi | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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CBSE cuts Islamic empires, Cold War from board syllabi

By, New Delhi
Apr 23, 2022 05:19 AM IST

CBSE, which released the syllabus for the 2022-23 session on Thursday, has rationalised the coursework for students of classes 9 to 12 by around 30% to reduce their burden.

The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has removed chapters dealing with the rise of Islamic empires in Afro-Asian territories, chronicles of Mughal courts, the Cold War and the industrial revolution from the History and Political Science syllabus of classes 11 and 12, a section of teachers has said.

The CBSE has also officially declared that it will conduct only one board examination for the 2022-23 batch, which will be held at the end of the academic session. (Sanchit Khanna/HT)
The CBSE has also officially declared that it will conduct only one board examination for the 2022-23 batch, which will be held at the end of the academic session. (Sanchit Khanna/HT)

The board has also officially declared that it will conduct only one board examination for the 2022-23 batch, which will be held at the end of the academic session. In the ongoing session, CBSE opted for a two-exam process as a one-time measure in view of the pandemic.

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CBSE, which released the syllabus for the 2022-23 session on Thursday, has rationalised the coursework for students of classes 9 to 12 by around 30% to reduce their burden.

While the board has maintained that its rationalisation of the syllabus is in alignment with recommendations by the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT), teachers have raised concerns over the removal of certain chapters from the syllabus.

One of the chapters missing from the Class 11 History syllabus, titled ‘Central Islamic Lands’, deals with the rise of Islamic empires in the Afro-Asian territories and its implications for economy and society, according to a description on the CBSE website. The chapter focuses on arenas of Islam in reference to its emergence, the rise of the caliphate and empire building, the descriptor says.

A chapter on the industrial revolution is also missing from the syllabus.

In the Class 12 History syllabus, a chapter titled ‘The Mughal Court: Reconstructing Histories through Chronicles’ has been removed. According to the descriptor available on the CBSE website, the chapter examined the chronicles of Mughal courts to reconstruct the social, religious and cultural history of the Mughals.

Similarly, in the Class 12 Political Science syllabus, chapters on the Cold War Era and the Non–aligned Movement, along with those dealing with social and new social movements in India, have been removed.

To be sure, these chapters are still in History and Political Science textbooks currently in circulation in the market. NCERT is also rationalising the syllabus after which new books will be published.

A History teacher at a government school in Rohini, who did not wish to be named, said, “In a secular country like ours, it is very important to have in-depth knowledge of different religions. The chapter ‘Central Islamic Lands’ was a detailed study about Islam — from its origins till now. Similarly, the chapter dealing with the Mughal courts was the heart of medieval history in the class 12 syllabus. Removing these two topics is completely irrational.”

Kanu Sharma, a History teacher at The Indian School, said many topics in the chapters which have been excluded are relevant in present times as well.

“In fact, in the Mughal courts chapter, there was a mention of transgender persons as well. It gave details about how they were respected even in those times, while they are struggling for their rights at present...Instead of that they have included a chapter on economic and revenue policies of the Mughal empire, which would not interest students that much,” she said.

A political science teacher at a private school in Delhi, requesting anonymity, said, “The chapter dealing with the Cold War was the base for chapter 2 (‘The End of Bipolarity’), which deals with the aftermath of the collapse of the Soviet Union)... We cannot teach the second chapter without skipping the Cold War.”

When contacted, officials at CBSE said that it has followed a due process while rationalising the syllabus. “Teams of experts have worked on it. We will soon release a detailed statement on how the board has rationalised the syllabus,” said an official at the board, requesting anonymity.

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    Fareeha Iftikhar is a Special Correspondent with the national political bureau of the Hindustan Times. She tracks the education ministry, and covers the beat at the national level for the newspaper. She also writes on issues related to gender, human rights and different policy matters.

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