Kishanganj, October 19
A Class 7 exam question paper in a school in Bihar allegedly contained a question that distinguished Kashmir from India, sparking a new controversy.
The Education Department of the Bihar government has been conducting Mid-term examinations for the students of classes one to eight, which continued from October 12 till October 18. It came to the fore when the students of class seven were asked in their English exam: “What are the people of the following countries called ? One is done for you.”
The paper setter cited the example of China and asked “As the people of China are called Chinese, what are the people of Nepal, England, Kashmir, and India called?”
This question was allegedly asked to these students in Araria, Kishanganj, and Katihar and further “highlighted the mindset” of the paper maker and setter.
“We got this via Bihar Education Board. The question had to ask what are people from Kashmir called? But, it mistakenly carried as what are people of the country of Kashmir called. This was human error,” Headteacher SK Das clarified.
However, District Education Officer Subhash Kumar Gupta refused to speak about the matter on camera.
Meanwhile, the educationists and Bharatiya Janata Party leaders have alleged the matter is a conspiracy and have sought a probe by the Union Education Minister.
Bihar BJP state president Sanjay Jaiswal took to his social media and shared the image of the question paper alonside captioning it as: “…Bihar givernment is still silent on my concern that they feel Kashmir as not a part of India. This question itself advocates that the officials in Bihar government consider Kashmir as a different country as Nepal, England, China, and India,” he wrote in a Facebook post in Hindi.
He further alleged that “Nitish Kumar is so restless with his desire to become the Prime Minister that they are inflicting anti-national question papers on the children of class 7.”
More details in this matter are awaited.
Notably, in 2017 as well, a similar question was asked in Bihar and a student in the Vaishali district pointed out the error.