Kerala Governor favours ‘Bharat’; says name ‘India’ given by others

Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan, on Thursday, supported the NCERT panel’s recommendation to replace “India” with “Bharat” in school textbooks.

Speaking to reporters here, Khan pointed out that the name “India” was given by “others,” whereas “Bharat” was a name chosen by the people of the country.

He said nobody has proposed making any amendments to the Constitution.

“What they have said, if I have read it correctly, is that in official communication, we will use the word Bharat more and I think if you look at it, Bharat is the name which we have given to ourselves. India is a name which has been given to us by others,” Khan told reporters here, reacting to a query.

Khan’s statement comes amid a heated controversy over the NCERT panel’s proposal.

Leaders of several opposition parties have voiced their opposition to the recommendation, alleging that the ruling BJP aims to alter history, taking such “desperate steps” out of fear of defeat by the opposition bloc, INDIA.

Congress general secretary K C Venugopal had said the word “India” evoked as much pride as “Bharat” but the ruling dispensation wants “to indoctrinate an entire generation into hating a word we grew up feeling a lot of pride towards.” There has been a raging debate over the government using “Bharat” instead of “India” at various international events in the recent past, after the opposition parties named their grouping as the Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance (INDIA).

A high-level committee constituted by the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) to revise the social sciences curriculum has recommended that “India” should be replaced with “Bharat” in textbooks for all classes.