Efforts on for restoration of Jamia Millia’s minority status


New: With an aim to intensify and unite the efforts for restoration of the minority status of Jamia Millia Islamia a new committee has been formed under the leadership of Ilyas Malik, former president of Jamia Students Union.

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As per the Indian Constitution minorities residing in India are entitled to establish their own educational institutions. Article 30 of our Constitution specifically mentions that the purpose of these minority institutions should solely to reduce the educational backwardness of the minorities so as to connect them with the mainstream.

“Keeping this constitutional provision in mind Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) was formed with the singular objective of educating the Muslim Community of India which was lagging far behind their fellow countrymen,” said Ilyas Malik, convener of the newly formed Jamia Minority Status Coordination Committee (JMSCC). He was speaking to RINA over the telephone. “It is responsibility of present and past students of Jamia to come forward and take up this task of restoring the minority status of Jamia”, emphasised Malik

Throwing light on the need and purpose of forming yet another new organisation when there are several others in operation for achieving the same goal former president of Jamia Students Union Malik disclosed, “The underlying principal behind such a move is to bring all of those individuals and institutions such as Jamia Teachers Association, Jamia Old Boys Association who are fighting for the minority status of Jamia on a common platform and to make a united effort in this direction”.

Dealing with the history of this movement Malik told, “Actually, at the time of its establishment Jamia was declared a Minority institution. In the year 1962 the University Grants Commission (UGC) accepted Jamia’s minority status. The status quo was maintained even when it was declared a Central University by an Act of Parliament”. “However, in due course of time the momentum was lost and the movement (for restoring the minority status of Jamia) went astray from its founding principles. The SC/ST Reservation Bill and other similar factors combined further weakened the progress of this movement, lamented Malik.

However, he had a special word of praise for all of those associated with the similar movement of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) who successfully fought for the restoration of AMU’s minority character. He felt an utter need for such a united action in the case of Jamia as well.

According to Malik, “As the name suggests it is a ‘Coordination Committee’ which signifies that the Committee will ‘Coordinate’ with different sections of the society to drive home its point. The setting up of this Committee is the first step in this direction”. Divulging the future course of action Malik revealed, “The next step would be to mobilise public opinion especially of the people residing in Jamia Nagar. Once these two tasks are complete, we shall make a representation to the government for demanding the minority status of Jamia”.

Replying to a question Mr. Malik maintained, “Since Jamia Nagar exists due to Jamia so there is an absolute need to educate people residing here about our struggle. Then only we can convert it into a mass movement and create pressure on the government to restore the minority status of Jamia. This is our aim and we hope that soon or later we shall be successful”.