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Bengal: WBBSE issues apology after question on "Azad Kashmir" goes viral

WBBSE issues apology after question on “Azad Kashmir” goes viral

January 18, 2023

The West Bengal Board of Secondary Education (WBBSE) has issued an apology after a Class 10 Model question paper of History went viral asking students to mark “Azad Kashmir” on a map of India. The board has issued an official statement stating that it is an inadvertent error and that the first option should be read as Kashmir instead of “Azad Kashmir”. 

Azad Kashmir, referred to as Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir (POK), is a region administered by Pakistan as a nominally self-governing entity and constituting the western portion of the larger Kashmir region, which has been the subject of a dispute between India and Pakistan since 1947.

As per the notice dated, the Board has also stated that any questions related to the option of Azad Kashmir have been dropped from the book of Model Papers for Class 10 Madhyamik.

The question appeared in a compilation of test papers provided by various schools and published by the West Bengal Board of Secondary Education (WBBSE).

The question is from Ramakrishna Mission Vivekananda Vidyamadir, a government-aided school in Malda district.

According to India Today, “There is no negative thought behind it. Only a historical fact has been stated. We follow the ideals of Swami Vivekananda and try to instill nationalism and patriotism among students,” said Swami Tapahara Nanda, the headmaster. 

However, WBBSE chief Ramanuj Ganguly said that a probe has been ordered.

“We have started a probe following which we shall rectify the mistake and provide clarification. We shall seek a response from those behind the mistake and action will be taken as per law,” Ramanuj Ganguly told India Today.

The education board president added that instead of a history teacher, a physical education teacher apparently prepared the faulty question paper. But since the book had already been distributed across schools in the state, there was no option to recall it at this stage, he further said.

Meanwhile, a political scuffle broke out on social media with Bengal BJP top leaders like Dilip Ghosh and Sukanta Majumdar, accusing the Mamata Banerjee-led government of creating an “anti-India” mentality.

Also Read:Bengal: Governor meets education minister, VCs of state universities

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