'Mosque Is A Source Of Noise Pollution', Image Published In Class 6 Textbook! Publisher Apologized!

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A Class VI textbook of science taught in some of the schools under the Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations (CISCE) has kicked up a controversy with one of its chapters using a Mosque-like image in pictorials to explain the sources of sound pollution.

The issue first came to the light after someone reportedly circulated a message on Whatsapp about the pictorial used in the textbook titled, Integrated Science. It later gained steam as people began sharing the controversial pictorial on various social networking sites.

One Masood Pasha, meanwhile, started a petition with a single signature at petition.org, demanding the removal of the pictorial. His petition had drawn more than 6000 supporters till Sunday.

The pictorial in the textbook has shown a man standing among various sources of sound pollution including an aeroplane, a fast moving train, couple of four wheelers and a Mosque-like building.

“The text book of science of ICSE board sixth class has a picture of noise pollution and it is illustrating the Mosque/Masjid is one of the reasons for sound pollution. It is totally wrong to point at one specific religion as a one of the reasons for the noise pollution. It will create unnecessary hatred among young minds of tender age kids. Pls (sic) remove the Mosque/Masjid picture so that we can avoid polluting younger minds in our country,” Pasha demanded in his petition.

A news agency quoted the chief executive and secretary of the CISCE Gerry Arathoon as saying in his response to the row that the ICSE did not publish “or prescribe these textbooks.”

"If any book with objectionable content is being taught at certain schools, it is for schools and publisher to ensure such a thing does not happen," Arathoon told the news agency.
Selina Publishers, which published the book, regretted over the controversy and promised that it will be removed from the textbook in next editions.

“The diagram on page 202 of our publication integrated science for Class-VI has a structure resembling a portion of a fort and other noise producing objects in a noisy city. We apologise if it has hurt the sentiments of anyone. This is to inform all concerned that we will be changing the picture in our subsequent editions of the book,” Hemant Gupta said on behalf of the Selina Publishers in a statement uploaded on the Twitter.

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