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West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee today said she was "shocked" over Central Board of Secondary Education's (CBSE) decision to drop topics such as "citizenship", "federalism" and "partition" in an effort to rationalise its curriculum from classes 9 to 12 amid the novel coronavirus pandemic.

She appealed to the Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry not to curtail important lessons at any cost.

"Shocked to know that the central government has dropped topics like citizenship, federalism, secularism and partition in the name of reducing CBSE course during the COVID-19 crisis," Mamata Banerjee tweeted Wednesday.

"We strongly object to this and appeal to the HRD Ministry, Government of India, to ensure these vital lessons aren't curtailed at any cost," the Chief Minister said.

CBSE on Tuesday, announced that it has decided to reduce its syllabus for class 9 to 12 for academic session 2020-2021 by up to 30% in order to make up for academic loss amid novel coronavirus pandemic.

"Looking at the extraordinary situation prevailing in the country and the world, CBSE was advised to revise the curriculum and reduce course load for the students of Class 9th to 12th," said Dr. Ramesh Pokhriyal, Union Minister for Human Resource Development.

The reduction in the syllabus will be in terms of retaining the core concepts, the HRD minister added.

"However the reduced syllabus will not be part of the topics for Internal Assessment and year-end Board Examination," the statement read.

The revised curriculum that was released by the educational board deleted certain subjects for the academic session 2020-2021 including secularism" and "federalism" for Class 11; "environment and natural resources" and "social movements" for Class 12; and "democracy and diversity" and "caste, religion and gender" for Class 10. To know all the deleted subjects from Class 12, click here.

Mamata was not the only politician to oppose Centre's move in disrupting the academic year.

Congress leader Shashi Tharoor also tweeted: "One has to doubt the motives of those who selected the topics to drop. Have they decided democracy, diversity, secularism and "the like are more dispensable concepts for tomorrow's Indian citizens?"

Universities and schools across the country are closed since March 16 when the Centre announced a classroom shutdown as a measure to contain the Covid-19 outbreak.

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