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'Biased, Targets Prime Minister': Row over DU's Journalism Syllabus Depicting RSS in Bad Light

Professor Raj Kumar, head of the English department, said his department has taken a firm stand on not hurting the sentiments of any community. Sources said the issue has already been flagged and the controversial portions will be revised.

PTI

Updated:July 14, 2019, 11:07 PM IST
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'Biased, Targets Prime Minister': Row over DU's Journalism Syllabus Depicting RSS in Bad Light
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New Delhi: A member of the Delhi University (DU)'s academic council has alleged that an updated syllabus of English Journalism course contains chapters on Muzaffarnagar riots and lynching incidents which attempt to target the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and its affiliate organisations.

Rasal Singh, the university's academic council member, also said the source material of such chapters has been taken from "biased" news portals which have often criticised the government.

"They are targeting the RSS and its affiliate organisations, even our prime minister. I will raise the issue in the Academic Council meeting on Monday and ensure it is not passed," he said.

Meanwhile, Professor Raj Kumar, head of the English department, said his department has taken a firm stand on not hurting the sentiments of any community. Sources said the issue has already been flagged by the undergraduate syllabus revision committee of the varsity and the controversial portions will be revised.

"In a meeting held on July 11, the updated syllabus was accepted, but since the chapter's summary was given, nobody realised what it actually meant. It was later felt that it might hurt the sentiments of a particular community and project things in a biased manner. The syllabus is being revised," said a professor privy to the development.

However, a journalism professor involved in framing of the syllabus, said the chapters in question were not aimed at taking any sides, but it was an attempt to teach students how to cover sensitive topics.

"In classroom sessions, students need to be taught how to cover various issues and we cannot be hypothetically teaching them by saying if there are riots, you need to do this. We can teach by telling them how a particular issue was covered by news channels, newspapers and news portals," he said.

Rasal Singh also objected to the updated syllabus portraying the RSS and its ideology in a "bad light". He claimed that a story named 'Maniben alias Bibijaan' by Shilpa Paralkar on the 2002 Gujarat riots, and papers like 'Literature in Caste' and 'Interrogating Queerness' depicted a wrong picture of the right-wing outfit and Indian culture.

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