Kashmiri textbooks rely on English, Urdu words

Kashmiri textbooks rely on English, Urdu words
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Error-laden books not updated since 2011

Irshad Khan

Srinagar: Demonstrating official apathy towards the mother tongue, the J&K Board of School Education (JKBOSE) is supplying schools with erroneous Kashmiri textbooks which have not been updated for years.
Supplying the textbooks printed as far back as 2011 to schools across the Valley, the board has not updated them for seven years now even as the contents of the textbooks are full of errors throughout.
Instead of focusing on the Kashmiri vocabulary, the board has used words from English and Urdu languages multiple times in textbooks over several classes.
For instance, while the native words ‘moul’ and ‘mouj’ should have been used for father and mother respectively, the JKBOSE has instead used ‘daddy’ and ‘mummy’ in the Kashmiri textbook of class 3.
Seemingly running out of native Kashmiri terms, the JKBOSE has used words like ‘hookah’ (hubble-bubble), ‘breakfast’ and ‘khanjar’ (dagger).
Top-rung officers who retired from the board years back continue to feature in forewords in the Kashmiri textbooks as on date.
Although the JKBOSE recently updated the Class 5 textbook in the current academic session, Prof Shaad Ramzan, who is part of the Kashmiri textbooks’ editorial board, admitted that the board had not been updating the erroneous textbooks for rest of the classes for the last many years.
“To be honest, if there are instances of words from other languages being used in the Kashmiri textbooks, it is our fault. It should not have happened. The board should update it on a regular basis,” Prof Ramzan added.
An official in the JKBOSE told Kashmir Reader that replacing all the faulty books at once would put a burden on the board’s exchequer.
“The board brings out the books on its own funds. Now if we replace all the books, it would cost us lakhs and in effect affect the fee structure of the students,” the official said.
A top JKBOSE official expressed surprise over the board’s failure to update the textbooks regularly.
“The officials looking after academic affairs are busy with workshops throughout the year. If they have not updated the textbooks, maybe they do not know what they were doing the whole year,” remarked the official.
The official said that updating the books was the responsibility of the Director Academics.
Director Academics, JKBOSE, Dr Farooq Ahmad Peer was not available for comments however.
The government in June last year said that it had made Kashmiri subject compulsory for classes 9th and 10th from the current and next academic sessions respectively.