Republic Day celebrations at madrasas in Mumbai, Patna

By Abdul Hameed and Mudassir Rizwan,,

Belying a perception that madrasas generally show little interest in national festivals like Independence Day and Republic Day, several Islamic seminaries in Mumbai and Patna and many others across the country, along with the nation, celebrated the Yaum-e-Jamhuriya (Republic Day) today with enthusiasm.

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Following the national tradition madrasa teachers and students gathered under the National Flag – Tiranga – hoisted it and sang the National Anthem and National Song with teachers reminding their pupils about the importance of the day and that they should be a faithful citizen of the country.

The whole Mumbai today celebrated the 60th Republic Day with joy and fervor and programs were organized at schools, colleges, and madrasas and even on the pavements.

Madrasa Rahmania in Govandi celebrated the Republic Day with the same spirit. Located in the Muslim-dominated area the madrasa has been conducting programs and hoisting flags on 15 August and 26 January for nearly 8 years and it attracts many people from its vicinity too.

The students of the madrasa presented their programs on the occasion that included the National Anthem and National Song (Sare Jahan se achchha Hindustan hamara) followed by speeches by the students focusing on the Muslims’ contribution towards freedom of the country.

“Some years back our madrasa would not hoist the flag but at the suggestion of a municipal officer we have been doing so for the last eight years,” Maulana Jalaluddin, secretary of the madrasa, told

“We hold programs on Independence Day and Republic Day to express our solidarity with the whole India and through this we tell the people about what our forefathers sacrificed for the sake of the country,” said the Maulana.

With same national spirit several madrasas in Bihar including Al-Mahadul Aali, a madrasa run in Patna by the Imarat Sharia (Bihar, Orissa & Jharkhand), celebrated the Republic Day.

Located in a densely populated Muslim locality of Phulwari Shareef in Bihar’s capital madrasa Al-Mahadul Aali celebrated the 60th Republic Day with full national spirit.

After hoisting the Tiranga Maulana Abdul Basit, secretary of the madrasa, told the students about the responsibility of a good citizen. He emphasized communal harmony and brotherhood among the people of the country. Quoting Allama Iqbal’s couplet “Ai Aabrood Ganga Woh Din Hai Yaad Tujhko, Utra Tere Kinare Jab Kaarwan Hamara” Maulana Abdul Basit told his students that they should not forget the purpose of the caravan of their forefathers that came here. He said: We should live here peacefully and maintain good relationship with our countrymen. We must not do anything that hurts others.

While talking to some madrasa students it was noticed that like their counterparts of modern schools the new generation of madrasas know a little about Independence Day and Republic Day and some of them are confused about the history of these two days.

Waheedur Rahman and Muhammad Ajmal, Class VI students of Madrasa Rahmania say: We celebrate 26 January as Republic Day every year because the Constitution of India came into force on the very day in 1950. Correct. But Muhammad Zahid of the same class is a little confused when he says today is Independence Day and 15 August is Republic Day. Similarly Abdul Haseeb of Class IV says 26 January is Yaum-e-Jamhuriya (Republic Day) and we are celebrating the day since 1946 while Ubaidullah who did his SSC says we have been celebrating Republic Day since 1947 or 1957.