The Assam government has started the process of converting government madrassas into regular schools with the aim of providing modern education to the students. A senior official of the state education department said the Board of Secondary Education, Assam (SEBA) and the Assam Council of Higher Secondary Education (AHSEC) have informed all the madrassas about the government's move.
Both the state education boards have sought consent from the heads of such madrasas for the conversion. These madrasas have since become affiliated to SEBA and AHSEC.
The Assam Assembly last year passed a law to convert government-aided madrassas into regular schools. The law envisages ending the religious courses taught in government-run madrasas. The teachers who are into teaching religious science lessons like Fiqh andAqaid will teach general subjects.
Fiqh is part of Islamic law that includes provisions and laws to guide Muslims on practical issues; how to pray and respect human relationships in family and public life.
The government has already abolished the Assam Madrasa Board. The state-run madrassas functioned under the supervision of the Assam Madrasa Board. After converting such madrasas into regular schools, the state will be under the control of the secondary education department. They will follow the modern education curriculum prescribed by the State Board of Education and the State Council of Educational Research and Training Assam till 2022-23.
Akram Hussain, principal of BAS Madrasa Higher Secondary School in Kamrup district, said the word madrasa has been removed from the official name of his school. "From the next academic year (2022-23), my institute will be known as BAS Higher Secondary School," he said.
Hussain said that courses on religious studies and learning Arabic language would be stopped. There are more than 700 recognized madrasas, out of which 402 have been made provincial by the state government. There are 198 High Madrasa Schools under SEBA while 542 madrassas are affiliated to AHSEC.
Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said that his government cannot spend taxpayers' money for studies of any religion. He said that the government would only provide modern education for the bright future of the students. The Assam government will also convert Sanskrit tolas into general education institutions.