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Darul Uloom Deoband ready for madrasa survey

'We now have an opportunity to frustrate the design of the anti-Islamic and anti-madrasa forces by proving that we are clean'
Darul Uloom vice-chancellor Abul Qasim Nomani had on September 6 said the convention would be held on September 24, but it was later advanced.
Darul Uloom vice-chancellor Abul Qasim Nomani had on September 6 said the convention would be held on September 24, but it was later advanced.
File photo

Piyush Srivastava   |   Lucknow   |   Published 19.09.22, 03:54 AM

The Darul Uloom Deoband has decided not to oppose the survey of unaided madrasas ordered by the Uttar Pradesh government but use it to debunk allegations that these Islamic schools promote extremism and receive illegal foreign funds.

A convention of the 250-odd madrasas that the Darul Uloom has countrywide, held at Deoband in Saharanpur district on Sunday, asked the about 50 madrasas affiliated to the 156-year-old Sunni seminary in Uttar Pradesh to cooperate with the survey teams.

It also asked these madrasas to get their records in order before the government charges them with any offence, reflecting fears that the survey might be used to shut down some of these schools on the pretext of funding irregularities.

“A narrative has been created in recent years that madrasas are producing anti-national elements and engaging in all sorts of wrongdoing,” Arshad Madani, a leader of the Jamiat Ulama-i-Hind, a leading organisation of Islamic scholars, told reporters after the meeting.

“We now have an opportunity to frustrate the design of the anti-Islamic and anti-madrasa forces by proving that we are clean.”

Madani, a Darul Uloom alumnus who had been invited to the convention, added: “We have asked the madrasa managements in the state to check their land records. If they are on government land, gram sabha land or forestland, they must demolish the building themselves before the government does.

“If someone has donated them the land, they should recheck whether the donor gave them a clean piece of land. We will not help any madrasa or mosque if it has been built on government or disputed land. It’s anyway haram (prohibited in Islam) to use land that’s not in the name of a masjid or madrasa or the madrasa’s owner.”

Madani denied the allegation from some BJP leaders that madrasas have been promoting terrorism.

“Someone may come to my house or yours, or to a masjid or a temple, and stay there if nobody knows their reality and if the security agencies allow them to move freely,” he said.

“It’s not me or you or the religious places that are responsible — the law agencies must do their job honestly and without malice against any religion.”

Madani said the Darul Uloom had urged “all madrasas in the state to ensure they teach schoolchildren free, which should include their education, stationery, clothes and food”.

The Yogi Adityanath government recently asked district magistrates to form teams and survey all the state’s 15,000 unaided madrasas. The survey began last week. The Darul’s about 50 madrasas in the state are all unaided.

Sunday’s convention was held on the grounds of the Masjid Rashidiya near the Darul Uloom. Reporters were denied entry but the seminary put up chairs and tables at a designated area outside the premises where Madani addressed the media.

Darul Uloom vice-chancellor Abul Qasim Nomani had on September 6 said the convention would be held on September 24, but it was later advanced.

Nomani had said the proposed survey was “alarming in the given situation when Islamic institutions are under attack”.



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