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Madrasas should be modernised, closure is not a solution: Yogi Adityanath

The Adityanath-led government in the state has brought in a series of regulations in order to, it says, modernise these madrasas and bring them at par with other schools.

india Updated: Jan 18, 2018 16:20 IST
M Tariq Khan
M Tariq Khan
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
Madrasas,Yogi Adityanath,Uttar Pradesh
UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath (PTI)

Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath said on Thursday that the closure of madrasas is not a solution and instead called for imparting modern education not just in the Islamic institutions but also in Sanskrit schools.

Adityanath was speaking at a meeting between the Centre and minority welfare ministers of several states in the presence of Union minority affairs minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi.

“We can think about modernisation of madrasas. Closing them down is not a solution but timely improvements should be considered. I also ask Sanskrit schools that besides imparting traditional education they should give computer, English, Science and Mathematics education to face competition,” he said.

Adityanath’s comments come days after state Shia Waqf board chief Waseem Rizvi called for madrasas to be shut down, calling the institutions a breeding ground for terrorists. The comments have triggered condemnation and uproar among the Muslim community, and some have even issued a fatwa against him.

The state has around 16,000 madrasas that offer courses in Islamic theology and religious laws. Around 560 of them are government-aided and 4,500 are partially funded by the state. The government gives around Rs 4 to Rs 5 lakh to every aided madrasa.

The state government has brought in a series of regulation in an apparent bid to modernise madrasas and bring them at par with other schools. It launched a portal of UP madrasa board in August last year for the online registration of all such Islamic institutions in a bid to check “irregularities”, improving quality of education, and transparency.

The madrasa board has also started preparation to introduce books by the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) in the Islamic seminaries to standardise and improve the curriculum in sync with job requirements.

“We are not able to utilise energy of those who are misguided in ‘Rashtra Nirman’ (nation building). Only quality education is the solution. Our government is committed to development without any discrimination.”

At the Thursday event, the chief minister also said there was no discrimination in the state in implementing welfare schemes for the minorities.

“Disgruntlement is bound to brew when there is discrimination. We have verified and issued 37 lakh ration cards without any discrimination. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has launched skill development programme, which is aimed to provide employment opportunities to youths of the minority community,” he said.

The chief minister said everybody wants to live with dignity and minorities were no exception.

“But unnecessary controversies are raked up whenever we have tried to raise issues for their (minorities) betterment,” he said adding that minority welfare department had a very important role to play in this.

Adityanath also thanked Union minority affairs minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi for choosing UP for the conference.

“The main agenda of the programme is development with dignity and empowerment of minorities without appeasement. Various developmental measures initiated by different state governments for education and socio-economic development will come up for discussion,” Naqvi, who is holding the brainstorming meeting with the states and Union territories, said.

Naqvi said education would also be a focus area of the discussion, especially that of Muslim girls.

Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Uttrakahand, Jammu and Kashmir, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Chandigarh, Delhi and Punjab participated in the meeting.

(with inputs from agencies)

First Published: Jan 18, 2018 14:23 IST