The heartthrob of many (including some BJP supporters) Captain Amarinder Singh, and his Congress Party have pulled a stunt regarding the history textbooks of Punjab. Acclaimed by many as among the ‘few good men’ remaining in the Congress, the Captain has put all such rumors to rest and proven that the Congress Party is full of politicians who have sold their souls to 10 Janpath. It requires immense courage, I must say, to omit TWENTY THREE chapters of Sikh history from the Class XII history books of PSEB (Punjab School Education Board).
Twenty three chapters which include lessons on Sikh Gurus, their teachings, the struggle of the Sikhs against the Mughals, the Sikh empire including chapters on Sher-e-Punjab Maharaja Ranjit Singh, the Anglo-Sikh War are among the the deletions by the PSEB. The excuse given by them for this nefarious act? “We want to bring the syllabus at par with rest of India, i.e., NCERT syllabus.” Does this mean that it is only Sikh history which was meant to be deleted to bring Punjab students at par with the rest of the country? Surely, the officials could have thought of a better excuse than this. Considering that Sikh history is taught throughout India in not more than two paragraphs, it appears to me that this gamble of the Congress will bear the required results. History is testimony to the hate of the Congress party towards Sikhs, their culture and their holiest site of worship. It has always been the concerted effort of the Marxist historians and Congress politicians to glorify invading marauders, be it Ghori, Qasim, Ghazni or the tyrannical Mughals. Instead of teaching students about those who kicked these tyrants where it hurt them the most, what is now being witnessed is the removal of Sikh history from the one state where it needs to be taught the most! Imagine the Maharashtra government removing Maratha history and Shivaji history from their textbooks. Would this be tolerated? Then why this blasphemous act in Punjab?
Another excuse given by the government is that the syllabus removed from Class XII will be shifted to Class XI. However, the class XI syllabus circulated online among some schools in Punjab affiliated to PSEB has no mention of ancient Sikh history. Who then are these officials fooling? Moreover, it is not possible that such a revamp of history textbooks can occur without the Education Ministry being informed. OP Soni, the Education Minister of Punjab has claimed that he was not aware of this act. Is this how institutions are functioning in Congress-ruled Punjab? Captain Amarinder Singh has come out in defence of PSEB and his government saying that no ‘dilution’ of Sikh history has taken place. Mr. CM, it is not a dilution, but complete annihilation of Sikh history from books!
Adding to the controversy, Professor Gurmeet Singh Sidhu, HoD, Religious studies, Punjabi University has stated that PSEB had omitted major parts of Sikh history and that the version present in the books was factually wrong and that there was a clear distortion of history. If this is the state of affairs in Punjab, where Sikhism was born and took shape, what can we expect the other states to be studying about Sikh history?
Punjab has clearly gone into the wrong hands. Congress Party and all other cultural annhilators who wish to put Sikh history in a dump must remember that they can take out Sikh history from Punjab, but they cannot take out Sikhi from the land of the five rivers.