Monday, 26 October 2009

100 Hindus In A Madrassa

Now, this is unique; try telling the Mrikans and others who wish to destroy all Madrassas because 'they preach hatred and promote terrorism' that not all such schools are houses of evil.

Promoted and handled sensibly, these Madrassas (poor folks' schools) can serve as a counterbalance to the elitist English-medium schools which are fast becoming out of reach for even the middle class.

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Read other ARTICLES by the author to find out why he is banned on Chowq's front page

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Over 100 Hindus Pass Indian Madrassa Exam!

NEW DELHI: Over 100 Hindu students have graduated from the Madrassa Board in India’s western state of Bihar, set up few years ago to conduct examinations for madrassas.

The board declared results for the maulvi (intermediate), wastania (middle) and fauqania (matric) classes on Monday. Amongst the students who passed examinations were 100 Hindu students, enrolled at the Madrassa Islamia, Sandalpur in Araria district. Educationists believe, since many of the madrassas have included mainstream subjects, poor Hindu parents send their children to madrassas as they provide meals, and in some cases, lodging facilities as well.

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In the meanwhile....

ISLAMABAD: The government and clerics from five schools of thought on Tuesday agreed to modernise the madrassa education system. The decision was made during a meeting at the Ministry of Interior, chaired by Interior Minister Rehman Malik.

Representatives of the Tanzeem-ul-Madaris Ahle-Sunnat Pakistan, Wafaq-ul-Madaris Arabia Pakistan, Wafaq-ul-Madaris Al-Salfia Pakistan, Wafaq-ul-Madaris Shia Pakistan and Rabta Al Madaris Pakistan were present at the meeting, along with Ruet-e-Hilal Committee Chairman Mufti Muneebur Rehman.

Under the agreement, a modern syllabus will be introduced in all madrassas operating in the country, alongside religious instruction. The degrees offered by these madrassas will be standardised and recognised by all educational institutions.

Malik told reporters after the meeting that it had been agreed that the educational boards of all five schools of thoughts would be registered in order to give recognition to the degrees.

Apart from these measures, an Inter-Madaris Board, superior to the boards of the five schools of thought, would be set up to attest degrees as well as to review the educational standards in the madrassas.

Malik said under the agreement, all madrassas would register themselves with the Inter-Madaris Board and those failing to do so would be shut down. Around 15,000 madrassas had registered themselves with the government while 5,000 others would soon be registered under the new agreement. He said madrassas would function like private educational institutions under the new agreement.

He said the step had been taken on the directives of President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, adding that all the political parties would also be taken on board regarding the matter. Malik said all provincial chief ministers and other stakeholders would also be consulted in this regard.

Those who attended the meeting included Dr Attaur Rehman, Maulana Salimullah Khan, Qari Hanif Jalandri, Afzal Haideri, Jawad Haideri and Yasin Zafar.

The government has been attempting to bring madrassa education into the mainstream through the introduction of modern subjects for several years, but madrassa organisations have been resisting such efforts, claiming they were a plan by foreign countries to make their students secular.

It was earlier reported that the government was considering emulating the Turkish model to modernise madrassa education.

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