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Published in the 16-31 Oct 2004 print edition of MG; send me the print edition


Truth about Madrasa Board in UP 

By Atiqur Rahman Qasmi 

There is much talk these days about the favouritism of UP chief minister Mulayam Singh to Muslims such as formation of Madrasa Board and approval for the setting up of Mohammad Ali Jauhar University and appointment of 3000 Urdu teachers.

The Madrasa Board is already in existence in UP for long, though with a different name. Previously it was known as Arabic-Persian Madrasa Board. And till now it had been functioning in the name of Arabi-Farsi Shiksha Board. It conducted examinations for Munshi, Maulvi, Alim, Kamil and Fazil. However, it is another matter that its examinations were not conducted in time. Grants and scholarships were given to madrasas and minority children. Students passing in Munshi examination are getting admission in intermediate even now. Persons holding “Alim” degree are qualified for admission in the Aligarh Muslim University. Under this system many students, after passing BUMS examination, are absorbed in government jobs. Teachers of Arabic madrasas have been getting their salaries from government since long. Hence all this propaganda is unnecessary. But yes, the credit for the proposed new Urdu University goes to Mulayam government.

The only official Urdu magazine Naya Daur has been reduced to a thin volume. Lovers and well-wishers of Urdu could have taken a small amount as loan from the fund for the Urdu University to maintain the magazine at its previous level because many poor Urdu writers were getting at least some remuneration by writing for this magazine. But this was despised by propagandists of the Urdu University who are claiming that the Congress is obstructing it. Congress has repeatedly clarified that it is only against the appointment of Azam Khan as the the university’s pro-chancellor for life. There is no dearth of efficient and learned people in this state or the country for the appointment of a chancellor or pro-chancellor of the university. If the Samajwadi Party of Mulayam Singh is really interested in setting up the university, it can very well do so without Azam Khan as its pro-chancellor. 

As regards the appointment of 3000 Urdu teachers, the announcement was made more than a year ago but in spite of repeated promises and announcements, nothing has been done in this respect. The government is nearing its term. Once again so many promises will be made and voters will be requested to give ‘one more chance’ to Mulayam Singhji who would have done a great service had he only appointed 3000 Urdu teachers. 

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