The Latest: Top stories of the day
1. Kerala rape and murder: Police investigation was influenced by political pressure, says NCW report.
2. Geospatial Bill: India upset as Pakistan moves the United Nations.
3. After the murder of his father and brother an army officer accuses the Punjab Police of indifference.
4. The United States Senate passes a bill allowing 9/11 victims to sue the Saudi Arabia government for damages.
5. Tim Cook is likely to open an Apple centre in Hyderabad.|
6. Indian Premier League: Delhi slump to a dispiriting 19-run loss against Pune via the Duckworth-Lewis method.
7. Indian Super League is likely to be the country’s premier football championship from 2017.

The Big Story: Experimenting with India’s future

In 1948, American journalist Vincent Sheean interviewed Vallabhbhai Patel just after a massive Congress rally in Mumbai. Explaining the crowd, Patel said, with maybe just a little bitterness, “They come for Jawahar, not for me."

Leaving aside Gandhi, Nehru was India’s most popular politician from the 1930s to his death in 1964. For all the elections, the Congress fought in those three decades, starting from the first mass-based vote in 1937, Nehru was the party’s chief vote gatherer. And, of course, he was India’s first Prime Minister, holding together the nascent state after two centuries of colonial rule.

Yet, these towering achievement aren’t good enough for Bharatiya Janata Party ruled-Rajasthan, which has slashed him out from its textbooks, omitting to mentioning his role as either in British India or as India’s first prime minister. Even his seminal "Tryst with Destiny” speech, welcoming the dawn of Indian Independence has been excised. That’s not all. Rajasthan it seems also has an issue with the Right to Information Act, again expunging it from its textbooks.

Instead, what children will learn abut are the Hindu glories of Mewar, even as the epithet “Akbar the Great” is reduced to simply "Akbar".

If Nehru’s secularism, Akbar’s enlightenment and the mass benefits of the RTI aren’t good enough for Rajasthan’s children, then what is? The answer is obvious, really: cows. The state’s textbooks now contain a letter from a surprisingly erudite female bovine telling students how important she is.

In the 1990s and early 2000s, Gujarat was widely known as the laboratory for Hindutva. Now, it seems Rajasthan leads that field of research with Nehru, Akbar and the RTI being upstaged by a holy ruminant.

The Big Scroll
Long after his death, the Sangh struggles to understand why religious India loved atheistic Nehru, says Ajaz Ashraf. Rajmohan Gandhi asks if there’s a need to defende Nehru against fresh criticism from the Hindu Right?

Politicking & Policying
1. Union government protocol revives the Yoga Day “Om” controversy.
2. Telangana’s newest English daily likely to serve as chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao’s mouthpiece.
3. Quota stir in Mehsana: Gujarat High Court summons police with probe papers
4. A country-wide cap on cab fares is likely in order to check surge rates

1. Targeting Hemant Karkare’s investigation smacks of an attempt to snuggle up to those in power, says Julio Ribeiro, a retired IPS officer who was Mumbai police commissioner, DGP Gujarat and DGP Punjab, in the Indian Express.
2. No need to target population since India’s fertility rate is declining rapidly. We need to target quality of life argues Subir Roy in the Business Standard.

Don’t Miss
A victory for Trinamool could see the stock of Mamata Banerjee’s nephew, Abhishek Banerjee rise, says Sohini Chattopadhyay in this profile.

Abhishek’s ascent has been swift, especially in the wake of the charges against the Trinamool in the Saradha scam as a result of which Mamata has distanced herself from her lieutenants, most notably Mukul Roy. If she wins now, Abhishek will likely become the main leader in the party, say Bengali and English language journalists covering the Trinamool. Not in the government, they clarify, but he is expected to be the organisational boss of the party. A win in this assembly election would mean that whatever Abhishek has done since late 2014 is working.