Textbook board MD removed for ‘banning books’

Updated 10 Aug 2020

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Manzoor Hussain has been transferred and directed to report to the Services and General Administrative Department. — Nabeel Anwar Dhakku/File
Manzoor Hussain has been transferred and directed to report to the Services and General Administrative Department. — Nabeel Anwar Dhakku/File

LAHORE: The Punjab government has removed Punjab Curriculum and Textbook Board Managing Director (MD) Manzoor Hussain from his post who recently banned around 100 textbooks.

According to a notification, Mr Hussain has been transferred and directed to report to the Services and General Administrative Department.

Recently, the MD had banned 100 textbooks the board found to be “against the two-nation theory” or deemed “unethical and illegal”. Moreover, around 10,000 books by 31 publishers were seized, including those by Oxford, Cambridge, Link International Pakistan and Paragon Books. The textbook board had later constituted 30 committees for inspection of these books for further investigation.

Mr Hussain had faced severe criticism on social media for banning the books.

A senior official of the board, on condition of anonymity, told Dawn that Mr Hussain was transferred over the banning of the books. He said books by 31 publishers had been banned for allegedly printing illegal material and these publishers were upset over it. These publishers had played a role in getting Mr Hussain transferred and would now get their favourite posted instead, he claimed.

However, Mr Hussain told Dawn that he did not know the exact reason for his transfer. “I have completed my task of streamlining the syllabus and now it is possible that the government wants me on another post,” he said.

Published in Dawn, August 10th, 2020