With the Uttar Pradesh government set to conduct a survey of private madrassas, proprietors of the theological schools fear that their institutions may be declared illegal and “run over by bulldozers“.
According to sources, the fear was expressed by them on 6 September in New Delhi at a meeting of the Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind, one of the leading organisations of Islamic scholars belonging to the Deobandi school of thought.
However, state minister Danish Azad Ansari said the apprehension has no basis.
The Muslim body’s president Maulana Arshad Madani told PTI, “Nobody has any objection if the government wants to conduct a survey of private madrassas but care should be taken so that it doesn’t interfere in their internal matters.”
The sources said it was decided at the meeting that views of the Muslim community will be placed before the government, a close eye will be kept on the exercise and a steering committee be formed to protest any wrongdoing.
It was also decided to hold a meeting on 24 September in Darul Ulum Deoband to chalk out the future course of action.
‘Mini NRC’: Owaisi, Mayawati Slam Decision
Earlier, AIMIM chief and Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi and BSP supremo Mayawati had raised questions over the exercise, for which teams were to be formed by 10 September.
The government has maintained that the exercise is aimed at streamlining private religious seminaries so that students there could learn science and computers.
AIMIM chief Owaisi had described the exercise as “mini NRC” (National Register of Citizenship).
BSP supremo Mayawati has alleged that the government is trying to interfere in the internal matters of the seminaries with an intention to “terrorise” Muslims.
Meanwhile, UP’s Minister of State for Minority Affairs Danish Azad Ansari assured that no centre will be razed.
“Those expressing such an apprehension should tell if any madrassa was brought down by any bulldozer in the previous five years of the state government. The anxiety has no basis,” he told PTI.
The lone Muslim minister in Yogi Adityanath government said the state government is working honestly to bring madrassas into mainstream.
This story was originally published in thequint.com . Read the full story here