KANNUR: In an apparent move to douse the controversy over the inclusion of Right Wing Hindu ideologues’ texts in its syllabus, Kannur University has decided to add works of Muhammad Ali Jinnah in the curriculum for the third semester of its MA Politics programme.
The revised syllabus prepared by the Board of Studies in Political Science based on the recommendations of an external expert committee was approved by the university’s Academic Council on Wednesday.
The balancing act does not end with the inclusion of Jinnah. The board of studies changed the name of unit 2 of ‘Themes in Indian Political Thought’ contained in the third-semester syllabus to ‘Nation and Nationalism in Indian Political Thought: A Critique’.
Earlier, its name was ‘Rashtra or Nation in Indian Political Thought’. Also, the committee omitted some portions from the books of RSS ideologues M S Golwalkar and Vinayak Damodar Savarkar that were included earlier but retained some excerpts from the texts. Portions of texts by Deen Dayaal Upadhyaya and Balraj Madhok were also removed. In their place works of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, Periyar E V Ramasamy, Ram Manohar Lohia and E M S Namboodiripad, which were not in the earlier syllabus, have been added.
Issues raised by students are still in syllabus
However, issues raised by students organisations like KSU, MSF and AIYF persist as some excerpts from the books RSS theorists are still in the syllabus. This was done as the expert committee had, in its report, opined that students should learn about the political views of different leaders to get a better perspective of the nation and its politics. Revising the syllabus, members of the board of studies said postgraduate students of political science should go through every political idea suggested in the course and try to understand the conflicting intellectual perspectives and thought processes to get a proper understanding about the socio-cultural and economic structure of politics of the time.
The university had constituted the expert committee after the inclusion of books by the Hindutva icons in the syllabus sparked a controversy. The two-member committee, comprising retired political science professors J Prabhash (Kerala University) and K S Pavithran (Calicut University), was tasked with studying the syllabus in detail and recommend revisions.
Kannur university’s council gives go-ahead
Portions from books of RSS ideo-logues M S Golwalkar and Vinayak Damodar Savarkar were omitted
Kannur University’s Academic Council approves revised syllabus prepared by the Board of
Studies in Political Science
Works of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, Periyar E V Ramasamy, Ram Manohar Lohia and E M S Namboodiripad were added