Why New circular of NCERT on its website about authorship and copyright is condemable
We are disappointed to read the statement, as it does not respond to the sole point we had made. We have not raised issues of authorship, copyrights and NCERT's legal authority to modify these textbooks.
Date: 10th June 2023 : Some friends have drawn our attention to a 'new' statement uploaded on the NCERT website under the section, 'Rationalization of textbooks'. This seems as an unaddressed response to our demand to drop our names as Chief Advisors of Political Science Textbooks. While lacking in the courtesy of addressing it to us, this statement is also a ridiculously technical defence to pre empt other academics or chief advisors from making similar demands.
We are disappointed to read the statement, as it does not respond to the sole point we had made. We have not raised issues of authorship, copyrights and NCERT's legal authority to modify these textbooks. Our point is very simple: If they can use their legal right to distort and mutilate the text, we must be able to exercise our moral and legal right to dissociate our name from a textbook that we do not endorse. If the name of the Textbook Development Committee is there to acknowledge our contribution, as the NCERT claims, then we must be free to decline this generosity. If the names of this committee are reported as a matter of record, as claimed in this statement, then it must also be recorded that we do not approve of the present version. The continuation of our names inside the present version of the book creates a false impression of endorsement, and we have every right to dissociate with this insinuation. Besides, the two of us are clearly the "authors" of the signed letter that introduces each book. How can we be forced to introduce a textbook that we no longer recognise?
Surely, if the NCERT can get experts to make changes as desired, it can publish their names. The NCERT cannot hide behind our names as Chief Advisors.
Hence we reiterate our limited demand to the NCERT: please remove our names from the textbooks that were once the source of pride for us but are now a source of embarrassment.
Suhas Palshikar and Yogendra Yadav