History in curriculum

Chief Minister Pema Khandu while speaking at the 6th governing council meeting of the NITI Aayog, which was chaired by Prime minister Narendra Modi, said that, while the Arunachal government would “localize state-specific curriculum of culture and traditions at the primary level and Arunachal history at middle school level, the government of India must include Northeast India’s history and culture in the national curriculum.

It’s a laudable call by the chief minister.

In recent times, perhaps this is the first time that the chief minister of a state has asked for inclusion of Northeast’s history in the national curriculum.

For years, activists have been calling for inclusion of the history of the region in the national curriculum, but little has been done. At the school level, there is almost nothing about the history of the region, though at the university level, very few writings have been included. People from other parts of India rarely know about the region because they don’t get to read about the region, its histories and its people.

The history of the indigenous people and their struggle against British and Indian colonization will be discomforting to many – more so the nationalists – but one can’t erase the history of the region because it doesn’t fit the popular narrative.

It is time the history of the region was included in the national curriculum – right from school to institutes of higher education.