Harsh Vardhan denies proposing sex education ban
Union Health Minister Dr. Harshvardhan on Friday denied proposing a ban on sex education, but added that crudity and graphic representation of culturally objectionable symbols in UPA's sex education programme was not sex education.
"I am medical professional who embraced rationalism and wholeheartedly support pedagogy that is scientific and culturally acceptable. Crudity and graphic representation of culturally objectionable symbols in UPA's sex education programme was not sex education," said Harshvardhan.
"Sex education that builds societies free of gender discrimination, teenage pregnancy, HIV-AIDS, pornography addiction should be the goal," he said.
"I have clarified that the view expressed on the web site was entirely my own and made in the context of the UPA government's 2007 decision to introduce the Adolescence Education Programme (AE) in its original form. Even the chief ministers of UPA-ruled states had objected to it and subsequently it was modified," he added.
He also said that he had introduced several lasting reforms in the curriculum of the state's schools in consultation with experts.
"I had earlier held the Education portfolio (along with Health) in the Delhi government between 1993 and 1998, introduced several lasting reforms in the curriculum of the state's schools in consultation with experts. There was a sex education component in the curriculum then too but nobody reported objections with it," said Harshvardhan.
"I pointed out that thanks to bipartisan opposition, AEP was substantially modified. It is now positioned by the Department of Education and National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO) as a key intervention in preventing new HIV infections and reducing social vulnerability to the infection," he said.
"The programme is implemented in all states across the country through the Department of Education (DoE) in collaboration with the State AIDS Control Societies (SACS)," he added.
Earlier, Dr. Harsh Vardhan had created a stir by stating in his website that sex education in schools should be banned.
Harshvardhan had also made an equally controversial statement on prevention of AIDS saying, "Condoms promise safe sex, but the safest sex is through faithfulness to one's partner. Prevention is always better than cure."
(Posted on 28-06-2014)