Yet another row has erupted in the academic sector in Kerala, this time over the recommendation of books of a prominent Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) ideologue in the curriculum of the newly sanctioned post-graduation course in Public Administration at the Kannur University.
The controversy came even as a recently issued circular at the central university in Kasaragod warned its faculty of disciplinary action if their lectures or statements were ‘provocative’ or ‘anti-national'.
'Only if This Is Taught in Detail Will One Know What Damage These People Have Done'
The books that have been cleared for study at the Kannur University include those of MS Golwalkar, Vinayak Savarkar and Deendayal Upadhyaya. Along with them are books of Rabindranath Tagore, Mohandas Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru and other such personalities.
These books are included in the curriculum in the third semester of the post-graduate Public Administration course. The course is currently offered only at the Government Brennen College in Thalassery in Kannur.
But what has come as a surprise to many, is the way the chairperson of Kannur University, MK Hassan, belonging to the Students Federation of India (SFI) (student wing of the Communist Party of India-Marxist), reacted to questions on this development, as across the country the SFI is up in arms against the alleged saffronisation of education.
"This is included in the comparative literature part and only if this is taught in detail will one know what damage these people have done. We have already had a few rounds of discussion on this and now we are going to have a public debate to find out the response."MK Hassan, Chairman of Kannur University
Gopinath Ravindran, Vice-Chancellor of Kannur University, has not commented on the issue, IANS reported.
Meanwhile, media critic and former Malayalam professor at Calicut University, MN Karassery expressed shock over the development. "This is shocking news and such a thing should never have happened at all. I strongly feel this is just a test case for what is in store, as though those who are behind it are trying to test the waters," said Karaserri.
(Published in arrangement with The News Minute.)