Hyderabad: The local history of the newly-formed state of Telangana has not been included in state board textbooks post-bifurcation. Historians want the state government to implement the Heritage Act passed in April 2017 in the State Assembly, and include the history of the Kakatiyas, Qutub Shahis and Asaf Jahis, which spans 1,000 years, in school syllabuses.
Though the state government has included a few chapters about the statehood movement in Telugu and social studies books, students are unaware of the state’s rich cultural history and heritage.
CBSE, ICSE and SSC board textbooks do not have any mention of the local history. Students are largely taught only about the freedom movement and the Mughal Empire unless they opt for specialised courses at the graduate or post-graduate levels.
City historians say that 70 to 80 per cent of the people living near the Charminar have not gone up and explored the monument properly. While tourists flock to heritage sites in the city, locals hardly ever do so. They are largely unaware of the history of Hyderabad, and so they are unable to appreciate it.
Historian Dr Muhammad Safiullah says, “We have raised this issue with the state government many times. We have asked them to include chapters about local history in school books, but nothing has been done so far. The government has constituted a committee to look into this matter, but I don’t know what the committee is doing. We have also provided 1,000 pages of data which can be used in the books, but our efforts have been unsuccessful. The right people have not taken up the matter.”
Dr Chiranjeevi Kolluri from the Hyderabad Deccan Democratic Alliance says, “Dr B.R. Ambedkar always said until and unless of you know your own history, you cannot be a part of it. Textbooks are the source of knowledge for students. Unless local history is included in textbooks, how will it reach the students and the public?”
He adds that as the future of the state and the national, it is essential for students to know about the history of Telangana. “Students are the future teachers. They should know about the culture, heritage, local historical background, and food habits of Telangana. Unfortunately, many people in the state are ignorant about these things.”...