CBSE syllabus reduction: Controversy and the politics explained in pictures

Topics CBSE | Indian education | CBSE exam

Quick look at the changes

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In an attempt to reduce the exam stress of students due to the prevailing health emergency and prevent learning gaps, the education board asserted that no question shall be asked from the reduced syllabus in the board exams 2020-21 only.

Here's a look at some of the deleted chapters from the CBSE syllabus.

Class 9


  • Forest Society and Colonialism
  • Pastoralists in the Modern World
Class 10


  • Chapter 3: Democracy and Diversity Complete Chapter
  • Chapter 4: Gender, Religion and Caste Complete Chapter
  • Chapter 5: Popular Struggles and Movements Complete Chapter
  • Chapter 8: Challenges to Democracy Complete Chapter

What happened next

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The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) had rationalised the syllabus for Classes 9 to 12 for the 2020-21 session by up to 30 per cent to make up for the academic loss caused due to Covid-19.

However, it was the decision to drop topics related to Social Sciences which drew sharp reaction from opposition parties like the Congress, Left, Trinamool Congress, NCP and Shiv Sena.

Mixed responses

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The Congress said removal of chapters on Federalism, Secularism, Nationalism and citizenship, which are the pillars of Indian democracy, is a crude joke on democracy and is highly condemnable.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee also objected to the CBSE's decision. She tweeted, "Shocked to know that the central Government has dropped topics like citizenship, federalism, secularism and partisan in the name of reducing CBSE course during the Covid crisis."

Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said the CBSE should explain the rationale behind dropping certain chapters from the school curriculum.

CBSE's clarification

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After the controversy broke out over the CBSE's decision to drop topics like citizenship, federalism, secularism, etc. while reducing the syllabus for Classes 9 to 12 due to Covid-19 pandemic, the education board came up with a detailed clarification on Wednesday, stating that topics claimed to be dropped "are either being covered by the rationalised syllabus or in the Alternative Academic Calendar of NCERT".

"Contrary to some of the impressions being created, it is clarified that the rationalization of syllabus up to 30 per cent has been undertaken for nearly 190 subjects for the academic session 2020-21 as a one-time measure only," CBSE Secretary Anurag Tripathi said.

"The schools have also been directed to follow the alternative academic calendar prepared by NCERT for transacting the curriculum. Therefore, each of the topics that have been wrongly portrayed as deleted have been covered under alternative academic calender which is already in force for all the affiliated schools of the board," Tripathi said.

Read our full coverage on CBSE

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