Controversy erupts as Chennai school’s question paper calls protesting farmers ‘violent maniacs’

The question asked students to write a letter to the editor of a newspaper “condemning such terrible, violent acts of miscreants”
Controversy erupts as Chennai school’s question paper calls protesting farmers ‘violent maniacs’
Representational Image

A prominent school in Chennai has described protesting farmers as ‘violent lunatics’ in a question paper prepared for class X students. The controversy was sparked by a question based on the Republic Day tractor rally organised by the protesting farmers. The question asked students to write a letter to the editor of a newspaper “condemning such terrible, violent acts of miscreants”. At the end of the question, the protesting farmers were described as “violent maniacs”.

Image of the question
Image of the questionTwitter/ @tmkrishna

The question paper was prepared for the English exam of class X students on February 11, at the DAV Boys School. Reportedly, the school officials said that there were two options for the particular segment and students could choose a question to answer. Soon after the question leaked to social media, netizens from across the country began criticising the school, claiming that it could be construed as a “deliberate attempt to spread misconceptions among children against farmers who are protesting against controversial farm laws”.

Musician and activist TM Krishna shared the same on his Twitter account, and said, “This is a sample from a Class X English paper of a popular Chennai school. The incident and the much larger farm bills issue are still being discussed but here this is being said ‘violent maniacs under external instigation’.”

On January 26, the country witnessed a farmers’ tractor parade against the contentious farm laws, which later turned into a violent clash between the protestors and the police. In connection with the incident, the police arrested nearly 84 people and over 300 police officials were injured. Later, the Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM) claimed that nearly 100 people were missing since the tractor parade on Republic Day.

Punjabi actor-cum-activist Deep Sidhu, who had campaigned for BJP’s Sunny Deol in 2019, was arrested by the Delhi Police’s Special Cell. He was found instigating the crowd during the tractor rally and violence at Red Fort. Sidhu was accused of hoisting a religious flag at the Red Fort during the tractor rally, which evoked nationwide outrage. He was, however, untraceable after the incidents on Republic Day.

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