PUNE: Just days ahead of the Maharashtra assembly polls, a controversy has erupted over "exclusion" of the history of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj from Class IV books of the Maharashtra International Education Board (MIEB).
While the education department is being criticised over the exclusion, officials from the city-based Maharashtra State Council of Educational Research & Training (MSCERT) blamed the row on "misunderstanding" and asserted there was no attempt to drop Shivaji Maharaj from the syllabus.
Former school education minister Vinod Tawde on Thursday said there are no separate subjects till Class IV under the MIEB curriculum.
Separate subjects such as history, geography and science will be introduced only from Class V under the board which came into existence just four years ago, he said.
According to reports in a section of the media, the life and time of the 17th-century Marathi warrior has been "excluded" from Class IV books prescribed in the curriculum of the MIEB.
"There has been some sort misunderstanding and half information over the issue."
"There has been no attempt of removing the chapter on Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj from the books the of state board syllabus," said Vikas Garad, deputy Director, MSCERT.
He said the MIEB has been recently introduced and 81- odd schools in the state are under this board.
"The structure of the syllabus is theme-based and according to the structure, the subject of history will be introduced from Class V.
"In Class V, there will be topics on history and emphasis will be on ancient and medieval history," he said.
Garad said from Class VI, there are plans to introduce an elaborate history on Shivaji Maharaj.
"The objective is to provide a rich content about Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj to students who will have better understanding about the subject," he said.
The Maharashtra International Education Board was constituted when Tawde was the school education minister.
Tawde said, "There are no separate subjects till Class IV in this curriculum. Separate subjects such as history, geography and science will be introduced from Class V."
"If you check standard VI books, you will find mention of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj and his various achievements. The books also provide additional information about the society, its structure and useful management tactics used in those days which are also relevant today," Tawde said.
"As the board was formulated just four years back, the first batch of Class VI is yet to come in. Once Class VI students come, they will be able to read better books we have prepared," said the former minister.