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NCERT Revises Textbooks with New Findings 


The latest revisions by NCERT in its textbooks incorporate DNA analysis findings from Rakhigarhi to emphasize ancient Indian continuity. Other notable changes include highlighting Ahom victories, using honorifics for Shivaji, and modifying terms like “rebel” to “revolt” in historical contexts to present a more accurate and inclusive representation of India’s history and culture.


GS I: History

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Key Facts Related to Rakhigarhi
  2. Ahom Dynasty
  3. Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj
  4. National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT)

Key Facts Related to Rakhigarhi:

Location and Historical Context:
  • Location: Rakhigarhi is an archaeological site located in the Hisar district of Haryana, situated in the Ghaggar-Hakra river plain.
  • Size and Importance: It is one of the largest sites of the Indus Valley Civilization (IVC) and is located on the banks of the now-dry Sarasvati River.
  • Phases of Civilization: Rakhigarhi has revealed three distinct phases of the Indus Valley civilization: Early, Mature, and Late.
Major Archaeological Findings:
  • Infrastructure and Settlement: The site has revealed a well-structured drainage system, lanes, and possibly a walled settlement.
  • Artifacts: Numerous artifacts have been discovered, including jewelry made of copper and gold, terracotta toys, earthen pots, seals, and semi-precious stones such as agate and carnelian.
  • Significant Discoveries: Two female skeletons were found buried with a wealth of pottery and adorned jewelry. A cylindrical seal with five Harappan characters on one side and an alligator symbol on the other is also among the notable findings.
Genetic Analysis and Cultural Continuity:
  • DNA Analysis: The DNA analysis of Rakhigarhi suggests a genetic continuity between the inhabitants of the Indus Valley Civilization (IVC) and modern populations.
  • Implications: This finding supports the argument for an indigenous origin of the IVC, challenging previous theories of large-scale migrations.

Ahom Dynasty:

Historical Timeline and Resistance:
  • Duration of Rule: The Ahom dynasty ruled over present-day Assam from 1228 to 1826 CE.
  • Significant Battle: The Battle of Saraighat in 1671 was a pivotal naval battle fought between the Ahom Kingdom and the Mughal Empire.
  • Outcome: The Ahom Kingdom secured a decisive victory against the Mughal Empire, effectively halting Mughal expansion into Assam and marking a landmark event in Ahom history.

Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj:

Establishment of the Maratha Empire and Military Tactics:
  • Empire Establishment: Shivaji founded the Maratha Empire, a significant power in western India that challenged Mughal dominance.
  • Military Tactics: Shivaji employed innovative guerrilla warfare tactics, leveraging mobility and surprise attacks against larger Mughal forces.
Administrative Reforms and Systems Introduced:
  • Taxation System: Shivaji introduced the collection of two taxes: the Chauth and Sardeshmukhi.
  • Provincial Division: He divided his kingdom into four provinces, each headed by a Mamlatdar.
  • Land Revenue System: Shivaji abolished the Jagirdari System and replaced it with the Ryotwari System.

National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT):

Overview and Establishment:

  • Founded in 1961 by the Government of India, the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) operates autonomously.

Primary Objectives and Functions:

  • Conducts research in school education.
  • Develops textbooks and educational materials.
  • Provides teacher training and promotes innovative teaching methods.
  • Collaborates with educational entities.
  • Works towards achieving Universal Elementary Education goals.

Role in National Education Policy 2020:

  • NCERT is designated as the primary agency for developing National Curriculum Frameworks (NCFs) for:
    • Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE)
    • School Education
    • Adult Education

-Source: The Hindu

May 2024