Maharashtra govt to set up committee to review books under flak over 'prurient' content

Under flak from Opposition leaders over 'prurient text' in two books meant for a supplementary reading of school students, the Maharashtra government on Wednesday announced setting up of a committee to review their contents.

PTI February 14, 2018 20:36:11 IST
Maharashtra govt to set up committee to review books under flak over 'prurient' content

Mumbai: Under flak from Opposition leaders over "prurient text" in two books meant for a supplementary reading of school students, the Maharashtra government on Wednesday announced setting up of a committee to review their contents.

Maharashtra govt to set up committee to review books under flak over prurient content

File image of Vinod Tawade. Image courtesy: VinodTawde.co.in

"Going by the sentiments expressed by Opposition leaders, a committee will be set up to look into the contents of the books," Education Minister Vinod Tawde told reporters.

"When these books were sent to an expert committee for selection, they did not have the content claimed by opposition leaders," he said.

The first book, "Baal Nachiket", published by Pune-based Bharatiya Vichar Saadhana, was singled out by Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil, leader of the Opposition.

He termed its contents objectionable and inappropriate for children. The book has words like "loss of virginity", "physical pleasure", "sexual desire", which are unsuitable for children, he added.

Another book, "Bhagwan Ved Vyaas", also published by the Bharatiya Vichar Saadhana, has a character called Matsyagandha, talking about her being a fisherman's daughter and having a repulsive body odour.

While talking to Rishi Parashar, she says, "Hey Rishi, who will accept me after I have lost my virginity?"

In the same story, there are lines like "Looking at the movements of her body Rishi Parashar was possessed by sexual desires" and "He lustfully caught her hand".

"The publishing house has links with the RSS and the government has purchased these books at inflated cost," Vikhe Patil said.

On the decision to buy books on Prime Minister Narendra Modi as supplementary reading material in state schools, Tawde said, "The books on Modi were included because they will cover part of our history and freedom struggle which could not be covered from the books on Mahatma Gandhi and Pandit Nehru."

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