UCA News
Contribute

Bishop speaks out against 'hate material' in textbooks

Instances across Pakistan are growing fast
Bishop speaks out against 'hate material' in textbooks

Researchers claim that Paksitani pupils like this group from Punjab are being exposed to hateful propaganda (file photo: Shutterstock)

Published: July 11, 2013 09:32 AM GMT
Updated: July 11, 2013 05:02 PM GMT

Archbishop Joseph Coutts has urged Church members to highlight biases and hateful material found in Pakistan’s educational literature.

Addressing a conference in Karachi on July 10, entitled Education for Peace, he said: “I invite all people from our multi-religious, multi-ethnic, multi-lingual and multi-cultural society to take initiatives to reach out to people and spread the word about fanaticism in literature.”

Recent research by the conference organizer, the National Commission of Justice and Peace Commission (NCJP), cites numerous instances of school textbooks with material that could incite secular mistrust and hatred.

It also claims a significant rise in such references. In textbooks issued by the education authority in Punjab province, the researchers found 45 instances in 2009, increasing to 122 in 2012. In Sindh province, the number of hate references were found to have doubled in a similar period.  

Peter Jacob, NCJP executive director, said: “We have noticed three books that were free of hate material in 2009 had chapters with hate material added in 2012.”

As an example, in a chapter on the United Nations, a Social Studies book approved by Punjab province states: “Most Non-Muslim nations of the world have always been against the Muslims.” And a book from Sindh province on the same subject says, as an aside:  “As was their habit, Hindus deceived Muslims at every step”.

The researchers also contend that syllabus textbooks offer a very one-sided view of world events, dwelling only on wars, killings, discrimination and conspiracies against Muslims. Several nations are described as “enemies of Islam.”

Taj Haider, secretary general of People’s Party Pakistan in Sindh province, has endorsed the views of Archbishop Coutts and the NCJP. “It’s a really difficult task but we assure all our support to the NCJP to remove hateful material from textbooks,” he said.

“By spreading this material we are not just planning to destroy others; we are committng suicide and killing our own nation.”

Help UCA News to be independent
Dear reader,
Trafficking is one of the largest criminal industries in the world, only outdone by drugs and arms trafficking, and is the fastest-growing crime today.
Victims come from every continent and are trafficked within and to every continent. Asia is notorious as a hotbed of trafficking.
In this series, UCA News introduces our readers to this problem, its victims, and the efforts of those who shine the light of the Gospel on what the Vatican calls “these varied and brutal denials of human dignity.”
Help us with your donations to bring such stories of faith that make a difference in the Church and society.
A small contribution of US$5 will support us continue our mission…
William J. Grimm
Publisher
UCA News
Asian Bishops
Latest News
UCA News Catholic Dioceses in Asia
UCA News Catholic Dioceses in Asia
UCA News Catholic Dioceses in Asia