Madrasas demand status on par with government schools

Kathmandu, May 8

Madrasas across the country today demanded status on par with government schools.

The government had expressed its commitment to mainstreaming Madrasas some eight years ago.

As per its commitment, 825 Madrasas were given approval but only 25 of them run classes till the secondary level, while more than 2,500 Madrasas are still operating without government approval.

Inaugurating a convention of Madrasas organised by Kapilbastu-based Jamiya Sirajul Ulum Al Salfia, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Women, Children and Social Welfare CP Mainali today admitted that the government had not been able to provide sufficient grants to Madrasas.

Madrasas have been receiving Rs 168,000 each year from government per teacher.

Similarly, the district education offices have been providing free textbooks and scholarships to girls studying in Madrasas.

Some of the Madrasas have been providing education up to the university level through affiliation with universities. However, the government does not provide ‘no objection letter’ to students from Madrasas to study abroad.

DPM Mainali stressed on providing modern and vocational education to Madrasa students. “If Madrasas could provide such education, students from other religion and community would also enroll in such schools,” he said, adding, “Entry of non-Muslim students in Madrasas would strengthen religious harmony.”

Stating that he grew up among Muslim women, CPN-UML leader Madhav Kumar Nepal said Madrasa Board was formed by the erstwhile CPN-UML-led government. He said Madrasas should be allowed to run classes till the university level.

Samim Ahamad Nadawi, president, Jamiya Sirajul Ulum Al Salfia, demanded that the government create posts for teachers in Madrasas and provide them facilities on par with government school teachers.

Maulana Masud Khan, spokesperson for Al Salfia Madrasa handed over a memorandum to Mainali demanding recognition of certificates of Madrasa students at the national and the international level.

The programme was attended by representatives of diplomatic missions, political leaders and religious gurus.