STATEMENT BY CONCERNED CITIZENS
- 1.We, the under signed, are shocked at the Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind (M group) unprovoked move to revive the Vande Matram controversy now. It is a well-known fact that the debate on Vande Mataram was settled way back in 1930s with the consent of the then leadership of the Jamiat. It was then agreed upon that the controversial parts of the Vande Matram would not be recited. The practice continues. We neither believe that the Vande Mataram is a test case of some one’s patriotism. Nor do we agree with the Jamiat interpretation that reciting the song would endanger one’s faith. Therefore, we strongly condemn the Jamiat move to unnecessarily provoke a controversy around Vande Mataram at this juncture. The Jamiat move has only strengthened the Hindutva forces, which have been in disarray since the last parliamentary election. We also condemn the Hindu right wing forces’ attempt to impose its recitation on citizens to prove one’s patriotism.
- 2.We are further shocked with the Jamiat attitude towards girls’ education. The Jamiat wants to “establish non-residential modern educational institutions for girls education” with “specially carved out syllabus which should be completed within six years.” The Jamiat further demands: “On completion of 10 years of age, complete shariat norms should be observed while continuing their education.” It is a retrogressive move not only to isolate girls from the mainstream of the national education but also to keep them confined in a secluded sectarian atmosphere. It is shocking to demand shariat norms in education for girls or for any segment of society in a secular state. We condemn this anti women move in the strongest possible manner and demand that such moves must be checked in time.
- 3.The Jamiat though encourages Muslims to take to modern education but it advises the young Muslim students not to take admissions in government or non-government schools because in such institutions Muslims students “get isolated and sometimes unaware about their Islamic values. We see this move as an indirect attempt to keep Muslims boys away from the mainstream education, which is exactly what Hindutva forces want. It will not only keep the community backwards but would discourage Muslims from taking to education for the fear of unnecessarily loosing “Islamic values”. We, therefore, condemn it in the strongest manner and appeal the Muslims not to heed to such ill-advised moves.
- 4.The Jamiat has also come out strongly against the Central government move to standardize modern education syllabus through establishing a madarsa board. The move, as practiced in nine other states, will open a window for madarsa students to the modern education. It will also streamline and standardize teachers’ salaries within madras’s. We support the government move in this regard and appeal the Muslim clergy to accept it in the larger interest of the community, madarsa students and madarsa teachers most of whom are presently very lowly paid.
- 5.A widespread debate on the women reservation bill is going inside and outside the parliament. There is a divide on this issue among various political parties. But the Jamiat move to oppose the Women Reservation Bill on the ground that it is a ‘desparate attempt to bring women into the mainstream’ and that ‘this will create various other social problems including their insecurity’ is highly objectionable. We strongly condemn it because it is another move to keep the Muslim women backward.
God bless them…
p.s : Thanks IHM..