Uttarakhand CM wants madrasas to install PM’s portrait, they cite religion to say no
Uttarakhand Madrasa Education Board says government orders are applicable on aided institutions and the total 297 madrasas in Uttarakhand, only one —at Rehmaniya Road in Roorkee — receives government aid
Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat Saturday criticised the madrasas in the state for their refusal to put up a portrait of Prime Minister Narendra Modi inside their premises, asking them to give up their “conservatism” on the issue.
There’s a catch though. The Uttarakhand Madrasa Education Board has already brushed aside a similar directive to educational institutions for installing PM’s portrait, issued after the Independence Day last year, saying such orders were applicable only on government and aided schools.
Of the total 297 madrasas in Uttarakhand, only one —at Rehmaniya Road in Roorkee —receives government aid.
“Installing the prime minister’s portrait in all government institutions and those being run on government grants has been an established practice. The madrasas should give up their conservatism on the issue,” CM told reporters here.
“Madrasas are also educational institutions. They should not have any objection to installing a portrait of the PM. They should view the issue from the Indian point of view,” Rawat added.
His statement is being taken as an apparent reaction to the madrasas refusal to comply with the state government orders on religious grounds.”Islam prohibits installation of pictures of living beings inside mosques and madarsas,” Deputy Registrar of Uttarakhand Madrasa Board Haji Akhlaq Ahmad Ansari had told news agencies a day ago.
However, he had also said that the refusal to install the picture of the prime minister inside the madrsas should not be interpreted as their opposition to an individual.
It was after the Independence Day last year that the Uttarakhand government directed all state-run and aided schools to put up a portrait of the PM and to take a pledge to implement Modi’s vision of a new India by 2022.
Uttarakhand has a total of 297 madarsas of which only one — at Rehmaniya Road in Roorkee — received government aid — an arrangement that was put in place even before the state came into existence. After the state was carved out of Uttar Pradesh in the 2000, Uttarakhand Madrasa Education Board — a government institution – was formed to look after the affairs of the madrasas.
“When BC Khanduri was the chief minister, he constituted the madrasa education board. But, the Congress government didn’t move an inch on this issue because of which 99.99% madrasas are still not aided by the government,” Madrasa Welfare Society chairman Sibte Nabi told Hindustan Times.
Incidentally, the madrasas are functioning in a pitiable condition. Over 5,300 students enrolled in these madrasas will appear for the board exam this year. The teachers at the madrasas are provided salaries from the fund received under the Centre’s Scheme to Provide Quality Education in Madrasas (SPEQM). The welfare society plans to take up the matter with chief minister so that quality education can be imparted in the madarsas.
“The directive is meant for offices. The madrsas don’t come under the purview of the directive. Therefore, there’s no question of putting up pictures of the PM. The offices too haven’t received any verbal or written instruction regarding the direction s|o far,” Haji Akhlaq Ahmad Ansari, deputy registrar of the board, informed.