“Some of the people bred on these books become journalists, columnists and editors of popular magazines and digests … making all possible allowances for’ the margin of duplication, we are still left with a very conservative figure of say thirty million people being told what they should not be told and hearing what they should not hear.”

–Excerpt from K.K. Aziz ‘s book Murder of History, 1985.

KK. Aziz is a well-known name among academics and students of history in Pakistan. His 1985 book Murder of History was one of the first studies that directly challenged the numerous claims made (about Pakistan’s creation and ideological evolution) in school textbooks. He made it clear that histories related to the ideological make-up of the country have been gradually mutated; a process in which, over the decades, every major political debacle has seen the insertion of a series of brand new half-truths in school textbooks. This has entailed the ‘extraction’ of those truths that might contradict the state’s rationale in explaining these debacles.

Recently, Pakistan’s political agendas can be seen through the seep in the national curriculum, where the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf-led (PTI) government in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa has agreed to revisions in the curriculum for government schools there, including the removal of pictures of schoolgirls with their heads uncovered. This uproar, for removing ‘objectionable material’ from the syllabus, comes from Jamaat-e-Islaami, PTI’s coalition partner, one that was asked for the removal of all un-Islamic material; this included the addition of 18 Quranic verses to grade 9 Chemistry book and “Assalam-o-Alaikum” instead of “Good Morning” being taught in first graders’ textbooks. Moreover, they also demanded the exclusion of chapters on Raja Dahir and Ranjit Singh from Grade 8 Pakistan Studies books. Such blatant demonstration of ‘Islamization’ can be seen as one that still attempts to make sure that the curriculum of Pakistan in no way deviates from what the influential figures want children to ‘focus’ on.