Chennai June 9 (IANS) DMK president M. Karunanidhi Saturday urged the central government to remove from a textbook the controversial cartoon lampooning the anti-Hindi agitation that raged in Tamil Nadu in 1965 as it hurts people's sentiments.
In a statement issued here, Karunanidhi said: 'The central government should intervene and remove the cartoon, respecting the sentiments of the Tamils.'
Speaking to IANS, DMK spokesperson T.K.S. Elangovan said: 'I have asked my people to get all the political science textbooks of NCERT for checking. Cartoons should not form part of any textbook.'
According to Karunanidhi, the cartoon in the Class 12 political science textbook prepared by the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) has hurt the sentiments of people and has caused deep anguish.
Elangovan said cartoons are a comment by a newspaper on an event and their relevance is of a temporary nature.
'Putting them in textbooks would result in distortion of history and the students getting confused,' he added.
According to Karunanidhi, the credit for the agitation against the imposition of Hindi in the state goes to the DMK.
Tamil Nadu witnessed serious anti-Hindi agitations state wide in 1965, resulting in several deaths in police firing on the protestors. The agitation spearheaded by the DMK is one of the major reasons for the DMK coming to power in the state in 1967.
Even during the 1930s - prior to Indian independence in 1947 - the erstwhile Madras Presidency witnessed anti-Hindi agitations when the then Congress government wanted introduction of Hindi in schools.
MDMK general secretary Vaiko also demanded the immediate removal of the controversial cartoon from the NCERT textbook on the grounds that it distorts history and hurts the sentiments of the people.
He said even C.Rajagopalachari, who first advocated teaching of Hindi in schools in the 1930s, later opposed it in 1960s.
The cartoon by famed cartoonist R.K. Laxman gives an impression that the agitating students do not understand even English while agitating against Hindi.