Punjab Education Department to confiscate LGS Science books over obscenity charges

Published: September 21, 2013

PHOTO: FILE

LAHORE: The Punjab Education Department has issued orders to confiscate the science book of class six of Lahore Grammar School (LGS) which the department says has obscene material which is provocative for youth.

A special departmental committee, formed on the instructions of Chief Minister Punjab Shahbaz Sharif, has also submitted the report based on its recommendations after a detailed review of controversial issues in the syllabus of the LGS.

The department said the introduction of religious studies “is tantamount to mislead and confuse the young generation with complexity of topics like comparative study of religions at such a lower level”.

Punjab Education Minister Rana Mashhood Ahmad Khan said that the importance of private sector in promotion of education is quite evident but no one can allow them to misuse this position. He explained that complaints had been received from various sections of society that LGS was indulged in teaching obscene material provocative for the youth.

“The CM took notice of this matter while he was on an official visit to Turkey and constituted a committee which has now completed its findings in this matter. LGS Administration said that they have expunged the objectionable material from their books but the said chapters are still included in the books available in the markets and Urdu Bazaar,” he added.

He further added, “Any further action would be taken after the instructions by the Chief Minister.”

The Punjab government had to take action as the obscene material is available in the market, he said.

“Article 25 of the Constitution of Pakistan is quite clear about the provision that no Pakistani citizen should be taught a religion other than his own religion”, the minister added.

He also said that provocation of youth via obscene material “was also cognizable under Pakistan Penal Code Section 293 and Section 298.”

Rana Mashhood Ahmad Khan reiterated that the Punjab government will not allow anyone to make the youth hostage to a foreign mindset by teaching them material which is against social norms, values and religious beliefs.

He also announced the constitution of a special committee under the convener-ship of Secretary Schools Education Punjab Abdul Jabbar Shaheen, which will review the syllabi of all the private sector educational institutions in Punjab.

He appealed to the media to identify objectionable material included in the syllabus of any school. The government will take prompt action against the perpetrators.

Reader Comments (52)

  • Amir
    Sep 21, 2013 - 1:50PM

    While studying in US, I took elective to study various world religion. This gave me an opportunity to learn what they beleive, made my beleif stronger and made me respect them as well.

    I fully support that to improve our understanding, make us an open society, where we are able to live in harmony with people different then us, what LGS did was good.

    Sad we make issue of non issues.Recommend

  • sidjeen
    Sep 21, 2013 - 1:54PM

    what a joke this country is. :(Recommend

  • Uzair
    Sep 21, 2013 - 1:58PM

    Yawn…!!!

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  • Feroz
    Sep 21, 2013 - 1:58PM

    Who will become a terrorist if the mind and eyes of students are opened, there by giving them an exposure to the world as it is. Indoctrination and tolerance cannot go together, rightly feels the Minister.

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  • Mj
    Sep 21, 2013 - 1:58PM

    Confiscated, since knowledge and information runs contrary to the objective of raising hyper-religious nationalists.

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  • Mj
    Sep 21, 2013 - 2:06PM

    ““Article 25 of the Constitution of Pakistan is quite clear about the provision that no Pakistani citizen should be taught a religion other than his own religion”, the minister added.”

    Why are they so afraid of teaching about other religions? Are they not confident in the surety of the dominant religion which is shared by 97% of the population?

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  • Baba Ji
    Sep 21, 2013 - 2:12PM

    Killed all the excitement … WHAT was the objectionable material ?????

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  • ignorantways
    Sep 21, 2013 - 2:20PM

    Oh i can see the sad faces of Libidos :(Recommend

  • C. Nandkishore
    Sep 21, 2013 - 2:20PM

    Oh oh. I thought India had to be wary of President Zia led generation. Now add this one too.

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  • Reply for Amir
    Sep 21, 2013 - 2:23PM

    @Amir, electives are when you’re in highschool (9-12), not for when youre in the 6th grade.

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  • Parvez
    Sep 21, 2013 - 2:27PM

    If Article 25 of the Constitution says that only Islam can be taught to Muslims………..then it needs amending because Islam teaches that ‘ one must gain knowledge even you have to go to ends of the world ‘, so it is clearly against the spirit of Islam.
    Pandering to the religious right has always been a strong point of the Sharif brothers.Recommend

  • ABKhan
    Sep 21, 2013 - 2:32PM

    Soon the books of Medcal colleges will be confiscated as they are obscene in the eyes of our great CM of punjab

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  • Faisal
    Sep 21, 2013 - 2:33PM

    Great, just great. Highly appreciated,the state needs to come hard on these ‘liberal bullies’ for good. Welldone Punjab Government!

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  • imran bhatt
    Sep 21, 2013 - 2:40PM

    No surprises here. These double standards have become a part of their social DNA.

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  • hmm
    Sep 21, 2013 - 2:48PM

    none of the so called “liberals”, commenting here, even tried to read that book & yet they’re crying out for no reason. There is no harm in studying other religions, BUT what will these students be doing come their examinations in “Islamic studies” in their O-levels???

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  • M
    Sep 21, 2013 - 2:59PM

    http://www.pakistani.org/pakistan/constitution/part2.ch1.html

    can the minister help me find the said provision in article 25?

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  • MAA
    Sep 21, 2013 - 3:05PM

    This country is turning into a stale joke.

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  • Sep 21, 2013 - 3:06PM

    @Amir:
    The US? Really? Because Americans are so tolerant, right? They hate Muslims, Chinese, Russians, Indian beauty queens, young unarmed black men etc. Basically anyone that isn’t a white American bible thumping Christian.

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  • Arzoo
    Sep 21, 2013 - 3:10PM

    The Punjab Education Department has issued orders to confiscate the science book of class six of Lahore Grammar School (LGS) which the department says has obscene material which is provocative for youth.

    Bravo Punjab Education Department for this enlightened outlook. Please also consider outlawing teaching Biology since it depicts pictures and drawings of human parts, in particular of females’, which should not be displayed in public. Especially these should not be taught to female students. Actually, since most of these bad things are taught in English, the language of the unbelievers, I wish there was a way to outlaw English altogether, to insure the purity of mind and environment. Maybe the Punjab Education Department can take a lead in coming up with a strategy to achieve this.

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  • kalia
    Sep 21, 2013 - 3:24PM

    @Amir:
    comparatives religion should be an optional subject, Not as a replacement of islamiat or islamic studies, which is compulsory subject.

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  • The Rebel
    Sep 21, 2013 - 3:26PM

    And thus our march towards the Dark Ages goes on and on…

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  • S
    Sep 21, 2013 - 3:28PM

    Great news! We must stand with Punjab government. It should take strict actions against the principal.

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  • Mj
    Sep 21, 2013 - 3:35PM

    @abdussamad:
    “The US? Really? Because Americans are so tolerant, right? They hate Muslims, Chinese, Russians, Indian beauty queens, young unarmed black men etc. Basically anyone that isn’t a white American bible thumping Christian.”

    Pakistan? Really? And who do we hate? Women, poor, non-Punjabi, Ahmedis, Shias, moderate Muslims, Indians, Israelis, Jews, Hindus, Christians, atheists, Europeans, Americans, darker skinned people etc. Basically anyone that isn’t a rich Punjabi conservative Muslim.

    @ET mods: Either abdussamad’s incendiary comment should be removed, or mine be allowed through for following a pattern of negative stereotypes similar to his.Recommend

  • faizan
    Sep 21, 2013 - 3:42PM

    hostage to a foreign mindset are also the madrassas which the govt happily loves because they are the harbringer of innovation in quality suicide bombers!pakistan deserves where it is today!mein to chala yahah say!

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  • Rashid
    Sep 21, 2013 - 3:54PM

    The matter of grave concern is, why this particular subject is introduced at the solt of Islamic studies only!
    Multidimensional Knowledge is no doubt benificial, but this must not effect the moral and religious values and mores of a soverign nation.
    I do appriciate the act of Punjab Govt.Recommend

  • Sceptic
    Sep 21, 2013 - 3:56PM

    Dear Ameer ul momineen, khadim e ala… khaleefa tul Muslimeen saab….
    What abt the non-Muslim students who have been forced to study abt Islam in apparently non-Muslim subjects like Urdu and Pak Studies? What ditch do u send down the constitution then?

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  • Sep 21, 2013 - 4:15PM

    There is no such clause in Article 25.

    25 Equality of citizens.
    (1) All citizens are equal before law and are entitled to equal protection of law.
    (2) There shall be no discrimination on the basis of sex
    (3) Nothing in this Article shall prevent the State from making any special provision for the protection of women and children.

    25A. Right to education:
    The State shall provide free and compulsory education to all children of the age of five to sixteen years in such manner as may be determined by law

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  • WB
    Sep 21, 2013 - 4:25PM

    @Amir: You studied world religons at University level, not in school! And remember we’re not Americans nor is LGS a school in America! Thats a huge difference!

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  • Insaan
    Sep 21, 2013 - 4:31PM

    @S: How dare the principal teach Muslims about other religions? Innocent Muslims may leave Islam? Is there a way to charge this principal with blasphemy?

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  • FARHAN
    Sep 21, 2013 - 4:37PM

    i appreciate this step libidos must be crying .remember pakistan is an islamic ideological state

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  • Heine
    Sep 21, 2013 - 6:08PM

    “Where they burn books, tomorrow they will burn people.”

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  • Bilal
    Sep 21, 2013 - 6:41PM

    The correct entry should be articles 20-22 actually. Just to clear the air regarding the people who believe incorrectly mentioning article 25 simply renders this entire piece as a bogus and dismissible.

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  • piddler
    Sep 21, 2013 - 7:03PM

    The only people who want us to follow religion strictly are western white people because that ensures we stay backward and illiterate. For front men they have the Mullas with semi literates on their side. The net result of all this OD on religion will be assimilation by India. Then will find out what the fuss was all about.Recommend

  • naeem khan Manhattan,Ks
    Sep 21, 2013 - 7:36PM

    “Article 25 of the Constitution of Pakistan is quite clear about the provision that no Pakistani citizen should be taught a religion other than his own religion”. Comparative religious studies is not against Islam or corrupting the minds of young children, what we see the intolerance of other faiths in Pakistan is directly related to the myopic ideology of certain people.Let us not forget that Islam teaches us that Muslims should go to far flung areas of the world to be educated and gain knowledge. I believe it is the same people who are ruling Punjab and Pakistan now, were advocating in1990s that their party Chief should become Ameer-ul-Momaneen, and for so many years they avoid to criticizes the brutalities by so called religious parties in Pakistan specially by the Taliban. By the way if Pakistanis children do not learn to know other people’s religious belief, believe me those religions are not going to fade away, and how do one rebuttal their arguments that their religion is better than Islam if one does not know any thing about it, that is where the danger lies to become ignorant. Pakistanis should be more concerned with the rampant corruption, rapes of children and women, the religious hypocrisy, poverty, lack of education, lack of sanitation, drinking water, mortgaging the future of their children to IMF, World Bank etc. and above all terrorism in the name of God. By the way I am a sunny Muslim from Mardan.

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  • ahmer
    Sep 21, 2013 - 8:14PM

    @WB:
    i studied world religions in grade 6 whn i was studying abroad. dont comment on wht u dont know

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  • Umer
    Sep 21, 2013 - 9:28PM

    Punjab is the hub of extremism, what can I say.

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  • HK
    Sep 21, 2013 - 9:59PM

    Really poor reporting by ET – while one wouldn’t really expect ratings-mongering Mubashir Lucman to have researched his facts correctly, this wasn’t expected here: Comparative Religions is a subject being taught to 7th grade at LGS, NOT grade 6.
    Moreover, the subject focuses on the history of religions: parents creating such a hue and cry over this subject are clearly very confident in the Islamic teachings and values they have imparted to their children over the course of 11-12 odd years at home. :)
    Furthermore, Islamiat as a subject resumes in Grade 8, as the students are expected to appear in their O Levels exams in Grade 10.
    PLEASE get your facts straight.

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  • Faustus
    Sep 21, 2013 - 10:14PM

    This is the most absurd and idiotic thing I’ve heard,and for someone living in Pakistan, that is saying something!

    I for one condone LGS’s decision to teach comparative religion because it is a progressive step towards a social evolution that Pakistan is desperately in need of. This subject will:

    A. Incorporate an understanding of other religions and one’s own

    B. Bring equality between the majority and the minority religions in education

    C. Instil tolerance and peace

    D. Create well rounded and well informed individuals (unlike the majority pseudo religious Pakistanis)

    It is essential to learn about other cultures and religions without isolating children from everything ‘foreign’ and different. This essentially counts as indoctrination and alienation which can lead to severe ‘otherization’ of religious and cultural differences. Pakistan may be a country of bigots now but steps like comparative religion can change that in the future.
    The problem with Muslims in general and Pakistan in specific is the resistance to change. The world is moving forward with innovations and creativity whereas this nation and Muslims in general are stuck in the Dark Ages when,ironically, it was the Muslims who were revolutionizing science, math and geography just to name a few. They did this by picking up and translating any book they found, especially the Greek classics, and improved as well as added their own ideas. It was comparative religion, science and literature that kept them on top of the food chain until they started regressing into ignorant pseudo religious beings that this country is rife with

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  • Talha Rizvi
    Sep 21, 2013 - 11:00PM

    @Feroz:
    Then why do we see extreme displays of jingoism from you open-minded Indians? Try visiting your own newspapers Hindustan Times and Times of India and just see the filth Indians say about Islam and it’s founder.
    @Mj; What about the RSS indoctrinated trolls who inhabit the online world like a virus. Including this website. By the way we already know that you Indians come here to display hatred against Pakistan but yet have the audacity to criticize us. The Indians hate everything even remotely related to Islam.
    @Insaan: Your moronic comments actually display your ignorance. By the way what are your thoughts on 2008 anti-Christian riots. A fellow Indian defended them on Seema Mustafa’s article comment page? Shame on you.
    @ Imran bhat: Here is an example of double standards, Indians coming here yet abusing Pakistan non-stop. If they had any decency they would leave altogether.

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  • Mj
    Sep 22, 2013 - 12:09AM

    @Talha Rizvi:
    “@Mj; What about the RSS indoctrinated trolls who inhabit the online world like a virus. Including this website. By the way we already know that you Indians come here to display hatred against Pakistan but yet have the audacity to criticize us. The Indians hate everything even remotely related to Islam.”

    Why did you presume that I am an Indian? I am a Pakistani, with a Pakistani ID card and a Pakistani passport. In your last statement, you are conflating two diverse topics: nationality and religion. I can be a Pakistani while disliking the exploitation of religion for politics and power.

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  • Affan
    Sep 22, 2013 - 12:21AM

    @M:
    now if u can read this then its crystal clear
    The State shall provide free and compulsory education to all children of the age of five to sixteen years in such manner as may be determined by law.

    Recommend

  • Nero
    Sep 22, 2013 - 2:40AM

    @ Hmm: “BUT what will these students be doing come their examinations in “Islamic studies” in their O-levels???”. Yes. That is the reason why the book has been banned – to save poor students some work ;-)

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  • unbelievable
    Sep 22, 2013 - 4:10AM

    @Mj:

    Because Americans are so tolerant,
    right? They hate Muslims, Chinese,
    Russians, Indian beauty queens, young
    unarmed black men etc. Basically
    anyone that isn’t a white American
    bible thumping Christian.”

    Oh really? Maybe you missed the part where America elected a black man who’s name was Obama who was mistakenly believed to be a Muslim by a significant portion of America. And the Indian Beauty Queen was elected Miss America. I suppose winning in your book is a sign that America doesn’t approve of you.

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  • M
    Sep 22, 2013 - 5:52AM

    @Affan: I dont quite get what you’re trying to say but if you’re saying that “such manner as may be determined by law” indicates a further law about this matter, please note that this is applying to state run free educational institutions. LGS is a private institution whose students pay a handsome fee.

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  • Noreen Raza
    Sep 22, 2013 - 8:07AM

    These jokers make our great religion look like the most insecure sacrament on earth and please tell me ONE child grade 6 or grade 16 who loved and understood her religion because it was taught in school….in fact. mostly it had the reverse effect. Shame on these stupid Punkab CM and cronies and may Allah do the greatest justice with the paid Lookman.

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  • sachin
    Sep 22, 2013 - 11:07AM

    It is essential to learn about other cultures and religions without isolating children from everything ‘foreign’ and different. This essentially counts as indoctrination and alienation which can lead to severe ‘otherization’ of religious and cultural differences. Pakistan may be a country of bigots now but steps like comparative religion can change that in the future.

    Recommend

  • sachin
    Sep 22, 2013 - 11:10AM

    It is essential to learn about other cultures and religions without isolating children from everything ‘foreign’ and different. This essentially counts as indoctrination and alienation which can lead to severe ‘otherization’ of religious and cultural differences. Pakistan may be a country of bigots now but steps like comparative religion can change that in the future.Recommend

  • Rex Minor
    Sep 22, 2013 - 8:27PM

    Why are bloggers getting all excited with their commentry? If the material is objectionable for the age group, and the Parents of the students do not support it, this must be thrown out of the school regardless of wheather the school is being sponsored privately or by the State!!

    Rex Minor

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  • Mj
    Sep 23, 2013 - 12:44AM

    @unbelievable:

    I was quoting abdussamad, who posted earlier.

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  • Sajid
    Sep 23, 2013 - 11:10AM

    Until 1947 we lived among other religions and many us of understood them. We did not need religious studies. Now we know nothing but propaganda. We are deeply insecure to need these laws.

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  • xmaestro
    Sep 23, 2013 - 9:53PM

    @Rex Minor
    I’m totally with you on this one. There is no point yapping around when the parents find the stuff objectionable! Law or no law.

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  • ash
    Nov 8, 2013 - 3:08AM

    I was my self a student in a private school beacon house where once being in class 7 the topic for debate was should abortion be legalised and I even did not know its meaning. Topics like such be stopped and condemned. I bought books from abrode on comparative religious studies and that help me under stand the differences in thinking and made my faith strong. Well I had no guidenc except Allah. But schools like LGS have got good staff and teachers to guide them well. This should be of no offence. Its just that we should first teach our own faith so properly that children get more form belief on Islam after reading about other religions. And are guided properly by teachers instead watching beliefs on TV and then comparing and getting miss guided.

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