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Title :
Victimization of Madaris Students
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I have just three wishes for the Madaris in India. The first is for their authorities to realize once and for all that the present syllabus cannot equip their students with the modern trend of the world,and the second is for the students to realize that the authorities are no more interested to change their mentality and rude attitude towards teachers as well as students,and the third is for the intelligentsia of the world and the government to acknowledge that,simply seminars and symposiums cannot bring about any changes in Madaris curriculum in India, and unlike any other non-governmental Muslim Organizations, government’s lucrative proposals cannot attract the clergies of Muslim society to convince these Madaris authorities to come under any government’s sponsored program. This is a conflict of ideas between two groups that,both are deeply convinced of their stand to follow, this is why neither government,s lucrative program nor the Muslim intellectuals diplomacy can resolve this sensitive issue. The development of the last few years in world politics towards Muslim religious institutions are extremely worrisome to me for reasons of being Muslim and a graduate of Darul-uloom at Deoband, (One of the most famous Islamic Seminaries of Indian subcontinent) while it is self evident that Muslims in India have the right to establish and run religious institutions of their own choice, and Muslims cannot and should not tolerate attacks on their identity, but the self proclaimed clergies of Muslims in India playing politics with the sentiments of Muslims and emotional black mailing of mainly small Madaris students by their heads, have raised a few important questions in my mind. The first question is,if the Muslim intelligentsia has the right to hold these Madaris responsible for the backwardness of the Muslim Society in India in general, is the Madaris syllabus to be held responsible for the sins of terrorist groups active in India or elsewhere in the world? I personally, as a human and Madrasa graduate know and fell even more acutely than others, that the murder of innocent civilians is inhuman and unacceptable. The think-tank of the Muslim society today very weekly argue, that number of Madaris is so high, if they modernize their syllabus, they can play a dynamic role to elevate Muslim Society in the field of education. The feebleness of this argument leads to my next question. According to “Flash Statistics: Elementary Education in India and Progress towards Universal Elementary Education 2006-07, released by the Ministry of Human Resource Development (HRD), about 30% of Muslim children do not join schools at all. While the number rises to 56% at the upper primary level. So while talking of Madaris and issues connected with educating the child, Muslim community deal with two problems, (1) how to get the out of school 30% into the school (2) how to modernize Madaris syllabus that caters to only 3% of the school going children. The question that needs to be addressed, therefore, is not the modernization of Madaris syllabus but setting up of more primary, secondary and higher secondary government schools in areas of Muslim concentration. However, if it is modernized, will these Madaris have any perceptible impact on the overwhelming majority of Muslim Children of school going age? Since, they do not go to any Madarasa. To my mind the basic issue to ensure that education reaches those Muslim Children who have been denied this right. Ironically. The issue of lack of access to education for the children of Muslims is tied up today with the issue of the Muslim children going to Madaris. Travel the length and breadth of this country , you will find the fact that wherever a government school has come up in the vicinity of Madrasa, more Muslim parents opting to send their children to government run schools. If the aim is to bring these Madaris in line with the modern institutions by Modernizing their syllabus, ignoring the identity and features of imparting religious education to safeguard Muslims identity, is this attainable? If not, then the whole attempt is not only thoroughly reprehensible, it is useless, if on the other hand it really is possible to bring them into main stream through inducing modern subjects in Madaris syllabus. How does it possible to keep the students interests alive and intact with the subjects like Faque (Islamic jurisprudence) Tafseer, (Comentary of Quran), Hadith (sayings of Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) once it has been completely modernized. As per the government’s estimate, more than thirty thousand Madaris in length and breadth of this country will not suddenly go down on their knees in reverence for any government sponsored program on the name of Madrasa reform. We must not forget that before independence the same syllabus was encouraged by many people and produced such luminaries that left indelible impression on the hearts and minds of then British rulers, but now the same syllabus is at the receiving end of criticism. The recent history of Muslim clergies leads me to believe that if Ulama-E-Deoband did not pay their heed to the demands of the rapidly changing world, another group that would be more inadequate for the task it has to perform and meet the religious needs of the people,most certainly take their place. Being a part of the mainstream aside, the entire Muslim community to day is hungry enough to receive such Ulema equipped with the modern trend of the world in order to address modern day concerns and questions not simply parrot whatever past writers have written as is the case with many Madaris and Islamic institutions in India. The emotional blackmailing of Madaris students is becoming increasingly recognized as a major factor behind students inadequacy and an important issue to be addressed, especially in the context of a strong connection of Mohtamim (Rectors), with the politicians and bad experience of students, who love their career and refrain themselves from being used for self recognition. The increasing anti terrorism seminars and conferences have further completed the life of innocent students. As a Madrasa graduate, I had several chances to interact with groups of several Madaris students. However I was stunned when, came to know the students, unanimous views on the issue of victimization. No one so far either religious clergies or any Muslim none governmental organization has raised the issue, while many accusations of modern society don’t lie with the Madaris students in fact. I have numerous instances to prove what I stand for. Nonetheless here I would like to divert the reader’s attention to the power struggle in Jamuiatul Ulema-E-Hind a 90 year old Sunni Muslim Organization, between nephew and his uncle, ‘I just want to make the readers, understand as to how Madaris students are annoyed and used for self recognition, though it has a long history in India, nevertheless, the example of Jamiatul ulema-E-Hind would
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