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HindustanTimes Thu,18 Sep 2014

Maharashtra govt scheme to provide aid to madrasas takes off

Dharmendra Jore, Hindustan Times  Mumbai, October 15, 2013
First Published: 08:32 IST(15/10/2013) | Last Updated: 12:12 IST(15/10/2013)

A few days after some Congress ministers complained that the state delayed the Prime Minister’s 15-point programme to boost the Muslim community’s educational and economical welfare, chief minister Prithviraj Chavan has issued directives to implement financial assistance for registered madrasas (Islamic schools) in the state.

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The government issued a detailed directive on October 11, naming the scheme after noted educationist and former President Dr Zakir Husain.

It has also invited applications from eligible institutions for grants to improve basic infrastructure.

The madrasas need to be registered with the charity commissioner’s office and the state Wakf Board.

The state cabinet had approved the scheme in early September, following which the Hindu vedic and varkari schools, too, demanded similar financial aid.

The CM had showed his willingness to consider the demand from Hindu schools as well and has asked the administration to work on it.

In the cabinet meeting on October 9, supported by his Congress colleagues, minority welfare minister Arief Naseem Khan raised the issue and demanded the expedition of welfare schemes for Muslims in the pre-election year.

The government issued a directive within two days.

The decision is significant because Muslims account for 10.6% of the state’s population.


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