Bengal history text books focus on Mamata Banerjee’s role during Singur movement

By: | Updated: February 22, 2017 5:03 PM

Just few months after the Supreme Court's order validated West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s stance on Singur, history textbooks for class VIII students showing TMC’s “achievements” during the movement have arrived in classrooms across the state.

A ten page chapter focuses almost entirely on Mamata Banerjee’s role in Singur. (PTI)

Just few months after the Supreme Court’s order validated West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s stance on Singur, history textbooks for class VIII students showing TMC’s “achievements” during the movement, have arrived in classrooms across the state, a report by ‘The Indian Express’ has said. However, other important players of the agitation CPI(ML), SUCI and others who have since opposed Mamata Banerjee, have not been included in the chapter. Lat year on August 31, the TMC Government scored a vital victory with the apex court terming as illegal and void the acquisition of 1,053 acres by the then Left Front government for Tata Motors’ Nano project in the district, and ordering restoration of land to farmers. This incident has found

Last year on August 31, the TMC Government scored a vital victory when the apex court terming the acquisition of 1,053 acres by the then Left Front government for Tata Motors’ Nano project in the district as illegal, and ordered restoration of land to farmers. This incident has found place in history textbooks for schools, which are affiliated to the state board.

The chapter, titled “Jami Jal Jangal: Jiban Jibikar Adhikar O Ganaandolan” (Land, water, forests: The right to life, livelihood and people’s movements) dwells mostly on Mamata Banerjee’s role in Singur. It said, “It was Mamata Banerjee who started the Singur movement by sowing paddy seeds.” While other TMC leaders like Becharam Manna, Rabindranath Bhattacharya and Tapan Dasgupta have been mentioned, two important participants have not been included.

The Leftist SUCI, which had joined hands with TMC before 2011 Assembly elections but fell out of favour later, and the CPI(ML) (Liberation), which was also part of the Singur movement led by Krishji Jami Raksha Committee (KJRC). “It wasn’t Mamata who started the movement. It began as a spontaneous resistance by local farmers and the TMC joined much later. KJRC was formed on June 4, whereas Mamata Banerjee sowed paddy on July 18,” Sajal Adhikary, state committee member of CPI(ML)(Liberation), was quoted by the paper saying

SUCI, which had joined hands with TMC before 2011 Assembly elections but fell out of favour later, and CPI(ML) (Liberation), were also part of the Singur movement led by Krishji Jami Raksha Committee (KJRC). “It wasn’t Mamata who started the movement. It began as a spontaneous resistance by local farmers and the TMC joined much later. KJRC was formed on June 4, whereas Mamata Banerjee sowed paddy on July 18,” Sajal Adhikary, state committee member of CPI(ML)(Liberation), was quoted by the paper saying.

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SUCI leader Santosh Bhattacharya told the paper, “Singur was a historic movement because in essence, it was a spontaneous movement of the people. It was not a party that began the movement.” Avik Majumder, chairman of the committee which decides the syllabus for state board textbooks, told the paper that no party had been mentioned by name and argued that history was in essence a “narrative” of events.

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