The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) is planning to lodge a complaint against Bengal’s madrasas in the Calcutta High Court alleging that these institutes teach ‘incomplete history’ of the nation.
The Sangh alleged that the West Bengal Board of Madarasa Education’s syllabus has Indian history only from the Muslim period omitting the history of ancient India, the Vedic era and Samrat Ashoka’s reign among others, which is a violation of the constitution.
Sangh members have already been in touch with a number of lawyers and are planning to file an appeal next week.
The West Bengal Board of Madrasa Education is an autonomous body under the state minority affairs and madrasa education department with over 600 madrasas under it and has nearly five lakh students.
“Students are future citizens of our country. If they do not learn about the glorious history of Samrat Ashoka, Panchsheel and Vedic era how will they grow up to be proper Indians? At madrasas, bifurcated history is being taught where it all starts from Muslim period. Indian citizens have a right to knock a court’s doors over the issue,” said Jishnu Basu, RSS Karyavaha (general secretary of South Bengal).
“They are not fully aware of the syllabus. We follow Madhyamik board syllabus for most part of our teachings and proper history is being taught. In the secondary stage (Alim) and higher secondary stage (Fazil), it is theology based and Muslim history is a part of it. Let them go to court and we will give our reply,” said professor Md Fazle Rabbi, president of the West Bengal Board of Madarasa Education.
According to the Sangh leadership, the history syllabus of the board at class 10 and 12 (secondary and high secondary levels) starts from 712 AD, which is the beginning of the Muslim invasion of India.
The syllabus only covers Muslim period and modern history. The syllabus does not teach about the pre-Muslim era, including the Vedic age, Gupta and Maurya dynasties, among others.
“We have collected books, syllabus and documents of the board and have held meetings with advocates. Article 30 of the constitution which gives administrative independence to minority institutions does not say that such bifurcated history can be taught. At secondary and higher secondary levels, where the certification is given, how can the syllabus omit ancient Indian history?” said a senior RSS leader.
“If this is the history taught in recognised madrasas, imagine what is taught in the unrecognised ones. We wan students to grow up as Indians and not fundamentalists” said a Sangh leader.
There are over 10,000 unrecognised madrasas in the state. After the Burdwan blasts, a small section of unregulated madrasas were under scanner where Jamat-ul Mujahidin Bangaladesh members were trained.