Jaipur. Vasudev Devnani, a former professor of Sanskrit, is the education minister of Rajasthan. But his recent comments about history and science have left many educationists flummoxed.

On Monday, Devnani said that it was Brahmagupta II, a seventh century Indian mathematician, who actually discovered the law of gravity a thousand years ago, and not English scientist Isaac Newton as widely believed.

“We studied that Newton gave the law of gravitation. But if we go deeper, we’ll find that it was Brahmagupta II who gave the law of gravitation 1000 years before that,” Hindustan Times quoted him saying at the 72nd Foundation Day celebrations of the University of Rajasthan.

Devnani , the BJP MLA from Ajmer having a long association with RSS, went a step further saying “Bramagupta II’s discovery” should be included in the curriculum in India.

Newton is widely acknowledged by physicists across the world to have discovered the law of gravity in 1686.  

After assuming the charge of the state education ministry in October 2014, Devnani has been regularly in the limelight for his remarks and action. He has restructured Rajasthan’s education along Hindutva line and stressed on more focus on Indian scientists Aryabhatta and Bhaskaracharya in the text books than the theories of foreign born Newton and Pythagoras.

In 2015, Devnani’s ministry directed all model schools in the state to make the students do surya namaskar and meditation before the class and announced that the state government would provide copies of Bhagwat Gita to all libraries in higher secondary schools.

The minister also announced that Mughal emperor Akbar would lose his nomenclature of “The great” to his Rajput rival Rana Pratap in the school text books.

In January last year, Devnani had claimed that the cow was the only animal that inhales as well as exhaled oxygen! “Gai ekmatra prani hai jo oxygen graham karta hai aur oxygen hi chodta hai,” he said in a function, adding that people should understand the scientific significance of cows.

He also claimed that cow dung has an abundance of Vitamin B and persons with diseases could be cured if they were brought near cows.  

 

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