Apex court approves common curriculum for Tamil Nadu schools (lead)

August 9th, 2011 - 11:57 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 9 (IANS) In a jolt to Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa, the Supreme Court Tuesday directed the state government to implement the uniform system of school education providing for common curriculum for all schools from Classes 1 to 10 within 10 days.

The court allowed the government to delete objectionable material, if any, from school books.

The apex court bench of Justice J.M. Panchal, Justice Deepak Verma and Justice B.S. Chauhan issued the direction while upholding the Madras High Court verdict in favour of uniform system of school education and rejecting the state government’s June legislation to postpone it by one year.

Speaking for the bench, Justice Chauhan said: “Passing the act 2011, amounts to nullify the effect of the high court and this court’s judgments, and such an act simply tantamounts to subversion of law.”

The state government had challenged the high court verdict, stating that the books brought out by the previous DMK government of M. Karunanidhi had references to himself and his family, thereby, amounting to indoctrination of impressionable minds.

“Undoubtedly, there had been a few instances of portraying the personality by the leader of political party earlier in power, i.e. personal glorification, self publicity and promotion of his own cult and philosophy, which could build his political image and influence the young students, particularly, in the books of primary classes,” the court said.

“Such objectionable material, if any, could be deleted, rather than putting the operation of the act 2010 in abeyance for indefinite period,” the judgment said. It chided the Tamil Nadu government for bringing the June 2011 amendment legislation to postpone the implementation of the Uniform System of School Education law.

The judgment said that “even if a very few schools could not exercise their choice of multiple text books, it could not be a ground of scrapping the act 2010. Steps should have been taken to remove the discrepancy”.

The Uniform System of School Education law was brought in to remove disparity in the syllabus of different boards in the state up to Class 10.

The court rejected all petitions of the state government on the issue.

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