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Jameatus-Salehat: revolutionizing women
By S Ubaidur Rahman, Rampur
you believed that madrasas are only outdated things with their obsolete
syllabi formulated centuries and centuries ago and students who come from
poorest of poor families, you are due for a surprising jolt. You may be in
for a further jolt when a madrasa meant for girls education established
some quarter a century ago catches everyone's attention in the country.
Jameat-us-Salehat is revolutionizing the concept of women’s education in
the country. It now symbolizes the success of madrasa system of education
for girls too that was so far the men's bastion. Salehat is not only
changing the concept of women education in the country but also giving a
facelift to madrasa concept. 'Madrasas are believed to have worst
educational set up in the country. People suppose that students from
lowest strata of the society come here to study. But we are changing this
whole scenario. Here girls from best family backgrounds come and get the
best quality education in the country.' says Maulana Yusuf Islahi, the
rector of the Jamea.
The madrasa established in 1972 by some local intellectuals to cater to
the ever increasing educational needs of the Muslim women in the country
with a handful of girls has now grown into an institution of great
importance for Muslim women education in the country. To be precise it is
the success of the concept. Now it is the role model of every madrasa
meant for women education in the country. Every advertisement of any
madrasa for Muslim women will definitely carry the name of
Jameat-us-Salehat as its role model. These madrasas also try to copy the
curricula and the teaching standards set by Jameat-us-Salehat. But rarely
anyone has got any chance to reach the level of Salehat.
More than a thousand students now reside in the sprawling campus spread in
several acres of land in the best locality of the Rampur city. More than
thrice the number of hostlers come from the city in the new campus alone.
Jamea has another campus-the old one too where classes for junior sections
are held. Every class has at least four sections from beginning up to
higher classes. Hostels having a capacity of around seven hundred students
are over crowded and now lodge around 300 more inmates than the capacity.
The school authorities have to return hundreds of students due to want of
lodging facilities in the campus.
The rector has an interesting story to share. A man in his seventies
brought his three granddaughters for admission from Kanpur. Due to the
lack of facilities he was asked to take back his three granddaughters. But
he was not ready to go without getting his children in. He told the rector
that he has taken them and will not bring them back, so the Maulana was
forced by his enthusiasm for education to admit his children in the Jamea.
It is not because the Jamea gives free education to the students. Jamea
charges full fees for tuition, hostel and other facilities to the students
provided by it. It is only its high and unmatched educational standard
that has forced the people to see to it as an alternative for their
Though a large chunk of Jamea's curricula comprises of theological
education comprising of Qur'an, Hadith, Fiqh, Seerat and other theological
aspects it gives great emphasis on modern subjects too. Till eight
standard the Jamea follows complete NCERT syllabus and teaches every
subject taught in modern public school. The only difference is that these
subjects are taught in Urdu and are accompanied with some books in Arabic
and Urdu. English is in its curriculum from very beginning. The Jamea
follows English of NCERT till its final classes. It will be amazing for
most of the people to know that the Jamea provides compulsory computer
education to its students since standard five.
provided quality computer education provided by any other standard
computer education institute in the city or anywhere, says Qanita Iram, a
student of class ten-Aalima Doem. This fifteen something girl of tenth
class who started using computer in Jamea can dexterously use Word, Excel,
Corel-draw and Page-maker on computer. Her animation quality on computer
has won many a admirers and accolades from all corners.
Iram is not the lone students having dexterity in computers. A number of
other students use computer with same ease as Iram. The faculty of
computer classes also come from the best computer institutes of the city.
And if you thought money was an obstacle for hiring teachers you were
mistaken. They are best paymasters among public and private schools
functioning in the city.
Salehat is also planning to launch a Unani medical college for girls. In
fact the registration for the BUMS course had started way back in 1997,
but due to approval obstacles, the course could not start in time. It is
said that the Jamea had established laboratory and all other basic
infrastructure for the proposed college initially planned to offer BUMS
course. Maulana Yusuf Islahi said that it was not difficult to procure
affiliation and recognition for the Jamea had we used the same tactics as
used by a number of other people. We were asked to pay bribe, but we
refused. He is hopeful that the proposed Unani medical college will be
functional within two or three years.
Had the plan of the Jamea for setting up an exclusive Unani medical
college for girls visualized, it would have been the very first college of
its type not only in the country but in the whole Sub-continent.
offers excellent residential facility for students. It has also made
excellent food arrangements for students staying in the hostel. Canteen is
also open for non-resident students of the schools. But everything comes
with a price. 'We have been trying to provide best educational,
residential and boarding facilities for students coming from all around
the country, but due to over crowding we are not able to follow the
highest standard, but still we are providing excellent facilities to
students.' Says the Maulana.
Jamea has all facilities in its sprawling campus, from a small hospital to
canteen, a general store and a bank. Seeing the excellent business
prospects in the Jamea, Union Bank has opened an extension branch in the
campus itself. Jamea also provides residential quarters to its faculty
Salehat has brought name and fame for the city where only a handful of
government and private colleges could be seen. No government or private
degree college or plus-two level college has been opened after the
Independence. Be it Raza Degree College, Raza Inter College, Hamid Inter
College or Zulfiqar School, all are the products of the Nawabi era that
ended with the merger of the princely state of Rampur with the country.
Salehat was the first of its kind established by some Jamaat people led by
the famous author and owner of Maktaba Alhasanat publishing Alhasanat,
Noor, Batool and Hilal, late Maulana Abdul Hai. Several educational
institutions imparting modern education have been set up inspired by the
success of the Salehat. Be it Sun Way School, Amatul's Convent or East
West Public School, everyone has a tale to tell. But credit definitely
goes to Salehat.
Now Rampur city symbolizes with Salehat. Whenever the name of Rampur comes
what instantly strikes the mind is the world-famous Raza Library and
Salehat. Earlier the former princely state was famous for its Rampuri
chaqoos (knives,) and caps. The city, among the most backward in the
country in terms of education now takes pride in the name of Salehat.