The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), which has over 19,000 schools affiliated to it, has sent a letter to them, asking them to register and place their demands for the academic session 2018-19.
The National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) launched a web portal on Wednesday that will enable schools to place orders for their books online.
"The portal will eventually also be open to students and individual buyers, but right now only schools can place orders for a month so that we can get a sense of the existing demand", Senapaty said.
The Council has come up with a new web portal where orders can be placed and text books would be delivered to the address of the purchaser.
"The schools will also have the option of directly procuring textbooks either from their nearest NCERT vendors or from the Regional Production-cum-Distribution Centres (RPDCs) of the NCERT located at Ahmedabad, Kolkata, Guwahati and Bengaluru", the statement read.
The NCERT textbooks can also be downloaded, free of cost, from the NCERT's website www.ncert.nic.in and users can access the digital version by downloading the "epathshala" mobile application. "The move has actually been taken for CBSE to monitor which schools are procuring their textbooks from NCERT and which aren't", they said. Individuals will receive the books through normal post.
The government, however, has been maintaining that they are "not making NCERT books mandatory but making sure that no child is deprived of books because of high priced private publisher books". "Heads of the schools may raise one time requirements of books to enable NCERT to make appropriate planning for printing of books", said CBSE chairman RK Chaturvedi. Sources say that NCERT has no proper count on the state-wise textbook demand in the country, and distribution is done based on approximate numbers. The books that will be published for next year will carry all the corrections, updations and additions, including chapters on demonetisation and Goods and Services Tax.