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The ordeals of Madrasa education

By Sadiya Rohma Khan

The tried and tested sagas, the typical appeasement of Muslim community just before any electoral is just so predictable. The power-packed speeches, garnished with hopes and promises, reminds one of the epic movie, Peepli Live and it’s glamorous focus on a not so happening, confused, and clueless “Nathaa.” Well, I do agree, there have been oodles of “Tushtikaran” or “Khushamad “or “Appeasement” whichever language one may choose to say it and this probably seems to be a perennial belonging.

For instance, I realize any individual who has not visited the poor infrastructure facilities existing in remotely situated and small populated madrasa, shall definitely have a little thirst to know more about the epistemological importance of its existence. The struggle of Madrasas remains constant as they stand clueless about visionary autonomy, while mostly being registered for Government aid and affiliated with minority educational institutions and universities etc. However, this sporadic scaffolding contributes little towards a solid robust maximized mainstream modern education.

The fate of madrasas stands misty for decades. I tried to understand the flow of brilliance while the Holy Quran is memorized. It’s amazing to watch the entire Quran being memorized. So factually the beam of brilliance is stratospheric, it is then probably a partiality to question: “The grasping potential of a child who is enrolled in madrasa education.” The point of speculation is, “Whether a direct absorption of Madrasa pass outs in affiliated Minority Institutions should be accelerated so that the absolute embargo on the Madrasa education is out from the prejudices?”. It is indeed regrettable that over the years, none could attempt to evolve a single-window system for Madrasa education.

One can’t miss agreeing that the victims of appeasements are ordinarily the underprivileged Muslims, the ones who are taken advantage of/by the magnetic political speeches over the decades. Majorly, political banking is on the votes of those households belonging to the underprivileged class, thereby madrasa education falls under the category of “healthy bait.” There is a dire need to create exemplary iconoclastic Madrasa education and extend meaningful interactions with mainstream education as a permanent flexible journey rather than promising interactions with wavering troughs.

In reality, to observe through the years while belonging to this community, madrasa education has gone through a struggle that has led to innumerable inhibitions in the past and extensions of multiple controversies. It should be viewed from a holistic view of academic mainstreaming and not for carrom playing. Mainstreaming just for the sake of mainstreaming does not yield any sustainable vision.

Yet apparently, madrasas are always given a low priority whenever educational surveys were conducted. I don’t say no priority, the word is ‘low priority.’  The outcome does not include only the present but it is an outcome knitted for many decades, which is indeed pitiable because political considerations of any political party should never bring hardships for underprivileged children, and in this context, the ones enrolled in Madrasa education. To validate it, take a ground tour and one shall learn the ground realities and constant perils these children face, while pursuing madrasa education with minimum facilities reaching them, despite existing Central and State provisions, and this canvas is worrisome. One might even end up spectating a small room with two teachers and two classrooms sessions conducted full-fledged. There is a possibility of usurping the released funds till it reaches the ground for implementation which needs to be closely watched or for that matter even the non-implementation of the provided facilities.

Lastly, I don’t think Madrasa education deserves any litany of isolation and that over decades the diagnosis has been wrongly done and thereby a wrong prescription is being followed. I believe that educational upliftment is an elevating force for the young minds who are underprivileged only if they are provided with the needed scaffolding and a wise pedagogy to also absorb into the scientific temperament of modern education.

I hope Modern madrasa education programs think innovatively and build a more fine-tuned progressive modern education temperament including excursions and academic exchange programs. What needs to be thought about is the state of rural small madrasas, which are in dire need of upliftment both infrastructure wise and should have advanced pedagogical training for better classroom sessions.