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Pakistan: Textbooks

Question for Department for International Development

UIN 1917, tabled on 18 October 2019

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what steps he is taking to (a) ensure that schools in Pakistan supported by his Department do not use textbooks with content that stigmatises religious minorities and (b) encourage provincial governments in Pakistan to work with religious minority groups to remove that content.

Answered on

29 October 2019

Inclusion and respect for minority communities forms an integral part of our provincial and national education programmes in Pakistan. Through the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Education Support Programme and the Punjab Education Support Programme II, DFID has also provided technical assistance to provincial governments to revise the school curriculum and remove discriminatory content from textbooks. Other work to promote tolerance and interfaith harmony includes: training nearly 100,000 teachers in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab in equity and inclusion; funding the Alif Ailaan education campaign which focusses on religious minorities; and engaging with education civil society organisations to champion issues of inclusion and raise these with government.