On 29th April 2023, Subhas Sarkar, Minister of State (MoS) for Education said that there was misleading information about the elimination of Darwin’s Theory from the (NCERT) National Council of Educational Research and Training science textbook for 10th standard. The reaction came from the Minister of State for Education only after receiving open letters from more than 1,800 science teachers, scientists and educators with reference to the removal of the chapter on ‘Theory of Biological Evolution’ from the NCERT science textbook.
NCERT intimated that elimination was a part of syllabus reconstruction effort after the Covid-19 outburst, but the community of scientists insists that the deletion of Darwin’s theory is a mockery of the education and will disrupt the thinking abilities of most of the students. The historical and scientific information has been dropped from the curriculum earlier too and this has provoked the objections from the related parties .
The NCERT made an announcement last year that the module ‘Heredity and Evolution’ will be substituted with the chapter ‘Heredity’ in the science textbook of Class X. Many topics were excluded from the chapter, some of them were ‘Origin of life on Earth’, ‘Charles Robert Darwin’,‘Evolution’, ‘Molecular Phylogeny’, and ‘Tracing Evolutionary Relationships’, etc.,
Recently, the chapters relating to the Mughal Empire were removed from the history books of NCERT, people didn’t appreciate this move of deleting the modules related to Mughals and most of them showed their frustration in the social media, very few people came forward to explain the necessity of orienting the students about the prominent discoveries of science.
A random person wrote a letter that said ,“Darwin’s theory is one of the basic things that everyone should know !! The whole country is against your decision of removing this theory,” the understanding of evolutionary biology is not only important in any sub-field of biology, but it is most important for the students to understand the world around them.
Academicians and Scientists made an argument that the temporary measures which were taken during the covid times (pandemic) didn’t get back on track, rather it was resumed even after students started going to schools.
A letter was included in a press release on 20 April by the Science Society opposing the exclusion of ‘Evolution Curriculum’ with signatories from Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Indian Institute of Science, Indian Institute of Technology and other famous science institutions in the country. The letter said that the students will seriously remain handicapped relating to their thought if there is no exposure to the basic discoveries of science.