Some members of the Congress’ student wing – NSUI (National Students Union of India) – allegedly tried to stage a protest and besiege the house of Primary and Secondary Education Minister B C Nagesh at Tiptur in Tumakuru district of Karnataka on Wednesday over the school textbook controversy. The activists were said to be protesting against the textbook review committee, headed by Rohith Chakratirtha, and alleged inclusion of RSS’s philosophy in school textbooks. There have been demands for sacking Chakratirtha for allegedly saffronising school textbooks by including in them a lesson on RSS founder Keshav Baliram Hedgewar’s speech, and for changing the content in the books.
There are also allegations of erroneous content on a 12th century social reformer Basavanna in the textbook, also accusations on insulting poet Kuvempu. “NSUI workers barging into the premises of the Education Minister B C Nagesh’s house and creating a ruckus is condemnable. Such a conduct does not suit students… Merciless action will be taken against those involved in such acts,” Bommai tweeted.
State Home Minister Araga Jnanendra’s office, in a statement, said the miscreants, said to be from NSUI, entered the premises of Nagesh’s house, raised slogans and set fire to the uniform of the RSS. Police stopped things from getting out of control and took 15 people into custody.
Jnanendra, also in-charge of Tumakuru district, visited Nagesh’s residence and took stock of the situation. Condemning the incident, he said a policeman was injured in the incident. “Strict action will be taken against those involved.” The police intervened and pushed protestors outside the premises of Minister’s house, official sources said, adding that 15 people have been taken into custody in connection with the incident.
As the news of the alleged ruckus by NSUI activists at Nagesh’s house spread, several of his Cabinet colleagues, including Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, condemned the incident. Jnanendra, who is also in-charge of Tumakuru district, visited Nagesh’s residence and took stock of the situation.
He said a policeman was injured in the incident. “Strict action will be taken against those involved.” State BJP president Nalin Kumar Kateel and Union Minister Pralhad Joshi, State Health Minister K Sudhakar, PWD Minister C C Patil and Power Minister Sunil Kumar too condemned the students wing members. Meanwhile, Bommai said Nagesh would submit a report on textbook revision on June 2 in the wake of the controversy.
A few seers and literary figures have written to Bommai seeking action on the controversy.