New controversy stirs up as Maharashtra is set to declare around one lakh students in the state as ‘out of school children’. The BJP led government has announced that madrasas which do not offer Mathematics, Science and Social Studies will not be recognised as formal schools.
The BJP government has conveyed to the school education department of the state, which is conducting a day long survey on July 4, to determine the number of ‘out of school’ children in the state, in a letter written by the state’s minority affairs department.
The Muslim organisations and opposition parties opposed this decision of the government.
Education minister Vinod Tawde told Indian Express that those students of madrasas who follow proper academic curriculum will not be counted as ‘out of school’. Only vedic schools who teach only vedas will be classified as non-schools, as said by Nand Kumar, Maharashtra’s Secretary (school education).
Tawde said that the main objective of the government is to encourage regular academic subjects such as Science, Mathematics, Social Sciences and languages in madrasas while they continue to impart religion based education.
Mukherjee said, “A substantial number of madrasas do not provide regular education to students. Our purpose is to first find out the number of students without access to regular education. We will take remedial measures after analysing the numbers.”
However, Amin Patel a Congress MLA from south Mumbai, said that it was ‘ridiculous’ that although the state government pays madrasas an amount up to Rs 5 lakh for various upgradation measures and for the salaries of the teachers, it proposes to term their students as ‘out of school’.
There are around 1,889 registered madrasas across Maharashtra according to the state’s minority affairs department.