Zafar Iqbal, Haseena Khan take responsibility for plagiarism spotted in a science schoolbook

They issue a statement responding to accusations of translating from the National Geographic website

Published : 17 Jan 2023, 01:47 PM
Updated : 17 Jan 2023, 01:47 PM

Prof Muhammed Zafar Iqbal and Prof Haseena Khan, who were involved in the writing and editing of a seventh-grade science book, have accepted allegations of plagiarism in the board textbook.

The admission came in a joint statement they released over the issue relating to accusations of lifting and using content on the National Geographic website in the book titled “Anusandhani Path” which follows the new curriculum.

“I don’t want to say anything more about this. This is enough. The statement is accurate. It makes the matter abundantly clear,” Zafar Iqbal said.

The allegations caught their attention on Jan 15 through an opinion piece published on the Prothom Alo's website.

The statement said that the complaint was that parts of some chapters of the book were taken straight from the educational website. This was clear when the sections were compared to what was on the website.

“It appeared true to us after comparing the sections of the book with the website content,” it added.

“Many people are involved in writing a textbook, and publishing a book is the fruit of their hard work and sincerity. These authors are held responsible for writing national textbooks in particular. It is disappointing and heartbreaking for our team when such allegations against one of the authors are proven.”

“Although we are not responsible for writing the section in question, we accept the blame as editors. The book will definitely be revised in the next edition.”

“The book was an experimental edition this year and there was room for revision and editing the next year. So any rational opinion barring the one being discussed will be viewed with consideration and necessary changes will be made to the book accordingly.”

Dr Md Mizanur Rahman Khan, Dr Mushtaq Ibn Ayub and Rony Basak were also involved in writing the book. Zafar Iqbal edited it.