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U.P. Govt to modify madrasa curriculum
By M J Akhter, Lucknow

The Uttar Pradesh Government has set up a committee of experts under the chairmanship of Delhi's Jamia Hamdard Vice-Chancellor Mr Siraj Husain, a UP cadre IAS officer, to revise and bring an uniformity in the curriculum of madrasas under State's Arabic-Persian Madrasa Examination Board, Allahabad.

Though a welcome move especially in view of the requirement of change of the ‘old and outdated’ curriculum of the fund-starved madrasas under the Board, people are sceptical about the eruption of this sudden love towards Muslims by the Government which was otherwise least attentive to genuine needs and requirements of the UP Muslims.

It is not yet clear to whom goes the credit for this move but the praiseworthy thing is that suggestions have been sought from experts and scholars of prestigious institutions like Aligarh Muslim University, Banaras Hindu University, and Lucknow and Allahabad universities besides Darul-Uloom, Nadwatul-Ulama, Lucknow and Darul-Uloom, Deoband. 

According to a study, conducted by Dr. Fahimuddin of the Giri Institute of Development Studies, Lucknow for the Union Ministry of Welfare the number of Madrasas in U.P have shown considerable growth in post-Independence India. In U.P, the expansion is remarkable. As per the rough estimate of the Registrar, Arabic/Persian Examination Board, Allahabad, Govt.of U.P, there are more than 10,000 Madrasas in the state. The Deeni Talimi Council, a body established in 1959 with Maulana Ali Mian one of its active member to streamline madrasa education, there are over 20,000 madrasa registered with the Council.

As per the Registrar of the Board, out of altogether 478 registered madrasas, 317 are to receive recurring grants from the government. Presently, there was no payment to them from the government.

The madrasas are essentially prime and cheap source of elementary education in the far-flung rural areas; their Tahtania and Fauqania standards of education are equivalent to primary and junior high school respectively. The Alia class has recognition of high school degree while the Alim degree is equivalent to the Intermediate certificate. The Kamil and Fazil degrees are equivalent to graduate and post-graduate degrees respectively in the state.

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