A screenshot of an admission form of the Maharashtra State Board of Secondary & Higher Secondary Education is viral on social media criticizing the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government. The screenshot is viral, claiming that Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray of Shiv Sena has removed the category of 'Hindu' from the religious column of the application form.
Advocate Vivekanand Gupta, whose Twitter bio reads secretary at BJP for Mumbai, shared the photo and captioned it:
"Hindu" disappeared from the Maharashtra secondary and higher secondary forms, in the religion column... "Non Minority" was used instead of "Hindu"... MVA @OfficeofUT sarkar is worst than Britishers and Mughals. What more to come .........
François Gautier, whose Twitter bio reads Journalist and writer, shared the photo and captioned;
The word "Hindu" disappeared from the Maharashtra secondary and higher secondary forms in the religion column... "Non Minority" was used instead of "Hindu"... This is a first, NO?
The photo is widespread on Facebook and Twitter with a similar claim.
Shiv Sena led Maharashtra government has removed the category of 'Hindu' from the application form.
The Logical Indian Fact Check team verified the claim and found it false. There has been no alteration in the application form under the MVA government but by the Prithviraj Chavan government in 2013.
We conducted a keyword search on the internet using specific keywords. We found The Times of India article published on 3 September 2013. The report is titled, "SSC, HSC pupils can mention minority status in exam forms". It states that decision was taken in a meeting between the then state minorities minister Arif Naseem Khan and school education minister Rajendra Darda. The report carried a statement by Arif Naseem Khan, "The new system will not only help in collating accurate data on how many minority community students appear for SSC, and HSC exams but will also help in streamlining admission to junior and degree colleges".
We also found another article of The Times of India dated 3 December 2020 related to the viral claim. According to the report, BJP leader Atul Bhatkhalkar claimed that the word Hindu has been removed to non-minority in the 10th and 12th examination forms. The state government said that this is not true, replying to this claim. At the same time, School Education Minister Varsha Gaikwad said that the form has been in use since 2013, and there has been no change.
We found that during 2013, Maharashtra's CM was Prithviraj Chavan, and the government was of the Indian National Congress (INC) and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP). So, the alteration in the admission form has no relation to the present CM Uddhav Thackeray of Shiv Sena.
We checked the format of the admission form of the Maharashtra State Board of Secondary & Higher Secondary Education for the past few years. The format remained unaltered and had the option of 'Minority Religion' as in the 2013 format. Click here to view.
Since 2013, the admission form has remained unaltered in the following government of Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) and Shiv Sena between 2014 to 2019, led by the then CM Devendra Gangadharrao Fadnavis.
In conclusion, the screenshot of the admission form is viral with a false claim that Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray of Shiv Sena has removed the category of 'Hindu' from the application form. However, the admission form was last altered in 2013 during the Prithviraj Chavan government.
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