June 25, 2008

Secularists must defend this excellent lesson in Kerala Textbooks

The Hindu
26 June 2006

Jeevan, the casteless

Here is the 58-word lesson in the eye of the textbook controversy in Kerala, titled Mathamillaatha Jeevan (Jeevan, the casteless), in translation:

After seating the parents, who had come with their ward, in the chairs before him, the headmaster began filling the application form.

“Son, what’s your name?”


“Good, nice name. Father’s name?”

“Anvar Rasheed.”

“Mother’s name?”

“Lakshmi Devi.”

The headmaster raised his head, looked at the parents and asked:

“Which religion should we write?”

“None. Write there is no religion.”


“The same.”

The headmaster leaned back in his chair and asked a little gravely:

“What if he feels the need for a religion when he grows up?”

“Let him choose his religion when he feels so.”