NEET journey through unrecognized Madrasas

Despite there being so many arguments about Madrasa education being unrecognized, the results show that the students from Madrasa have performed exceptionally well in NEET-2022.
Haifz Mohammad Ali Iqbal, a resident of Karnataka Bengaluru, secured 680 marks in NEET. He expressed his intentions and ardent desire to become a doctor in order to help the needy (Representational Image source-Unsplash)
Haifz Mohammad Ali Iqbal, a resident of Karnataka Bengaluru, secured 680 marks in NEET. He expressed his intentions and ardent desire to become a doctor in order to help the needy (Representational Image source-Unsplash)

Madrasa is an Islamic educational institute that provides free education, to children belonging to the Muslim minority community. The center encompasses the core values of Islam, Quran recitation, memorization, and other regular subjects. Madrasa is an Arabic word for secular or religious educational institutions. The media adjectives like jihadi and radical terrorists have been affiliated with the students of these institutes which doesn't go quite well with the case of Hafiz Mohammad Ali Iqbal. Haifz Mohammad Ali Iqbal, a resident of Karnataka Bengaluru, who secured 680 marks in NEET. He expressed his intentions and ardent desire to become a doctor in order to help the needy.

The perception is that once students take Hifzul from madrasas, they either become tailors or an Imam. We wanted to be doctors to help the poor as well. Madrasa students also want to study but the reality is they don't get the right kind of guidance
Hafiz Mohammad Ali

Recently the Uttarakhand Waqf board has decided to implement the NCERT syllabus in madrasa across the state. According to Uttarakhand’s Waqf board chairman, Shadab Shams, “no major steps were taken for the welfare of madrasas and its students.”

“The degrees offered failed to provide jobs to the madrasa students and the system has continued for decades. It is time for some positive changes and we have taken a firm step. Shams further added that introduction of NCERT books would help madrasa students enter the mainstream.

Recently the Uttarakhand Waqf board has decided to implement the NCERT syllabus in madrasa across the state (Image source-Unsplash)
Recently the Uttarakhand Waqf board has decided to implement the NCERT syllabus in madrasa across the state (Image source-Unsplash)

Islam enjoins preaching but forbids terrorism. Some intoxicated Muslim preachers have used Madrasa to preach jihad among Muslim youth blatantly. There has been growing consensus among the masses recently about Madrasas being a hub for terrorism. Many madrasas have been demolished in Assam and other states in the wake of the arrest of teachers who were alleged with terrorist outfits. While the madrasas focus on teaching, learning the Quran, and Islamic knowledge acquisition. 'The line between teaching and preaching has been blurred.'

The Uttar Pradesh government madrasas have decided to conduct a survey of unrecognized madrasas. According to them this is to gather information on teachers, curriculum, facilities and their association with other non-government organisations. This has sparked heat among the minority as they regard this as a 'mini NRC' move.

UP Minister of State of minority affairs, Danish Azad Ansari slammed opposition and clarified the objective of the investigation. “We are conducting a survey for the betterment of madrassas. Our aim is to modernize madrasas and we are trying to do the same. Modern education is also being given along with religious knowledge in madrassas under the Yogi government. All previous governments have used Muslims only as a vote bank,” Azad Ansari told News18 while attending a meritorious students felicitation function organized at Eram Convent College in Begumganj, Barabanki.

The investigation or scrutiny must go on in order to safeguard children and provide access to mainstream education.

Many madrasas have been demolished in Assam and other states in the wake of the arrest of teachers who were alleged with terrorist outfits. While the madrasas focus on teaching, learning the Quran, and Islamic knowledge acquisition (Image source-Unsplash)
Many madrasas have been demolished in Assam and other states in the wake of the arrest of teachers who were alleged with terrorist outfits. While the madrasas focus on teaching, learning the Quran, and Islamic knowledge acquisition (Image source-Unsplash)

Despite there being so many arguments about Madrasa education being unrecognized, the results show that the students from Madrasa have performed exceptionally well in NEET-2022 amid row of private madarsas.

Hafiz Mohammad Ali Iqbal, Hafiz Gilban Ahmad Zardi, Hafiz Mohammad Abdullah, and Hafiz Huzzaifa are Madrasa students who have cracked this year’s NEET (National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test) Hafiz Mohammad Ali Iqbal, who hails from Karnataka and had completed the Hifzul course from a Madrasa, qualified NEET with 680 marks. Thus, changing the perception that madras students are far behind in modern education.

"The perception is that once students take Hifzul from madrasas, they either become tailors or an Imam. We wanted to be doctors to help the poor as well. Madrasa students also want to study but the reality is they don't get the right kind of guidance," Mohammad Iqbal said.

Other madrasa students, Hafiz Gulman Ahmed Zerdi and Hafiz Mohammad Abdullah scored 646 and 632 in NEET. Hafiz Huzzaifa, another madrasa student hailing from Mumbai, qualified NEET with a score of 602. The perception is that we read the Quran and it is not related to modern education. Yes, studying in a madrasa creates a gap in learning which could be a hurdle. But studying Hafiz in Quran improves focus and willpower to achieve something higher, he said.

We are conducting a survey for the betterment of madrassas. Our aim is to modernize madrasas and we are trying to do the same. Modern education is also being given along with religious knowledge in madrassas under the Yogi government. All previous governments have used Muslims only as a vote bank.
Azad Ansari

Another madrasa-educated youth, Haifz Mohammad Saifullah from Karnataka, scored 577 and qualified NEET. He was inspired by his brother who is also a madrasa-educated MBBS graduate.

All these students are from the Shaheen Group of Institutions in Karnata, which provides specific courses in NEET preparation.

If this was a nefarious political conspiracy or a betterment move is still debatable. The conclusion is not to bulldoze or demolish madrasas and abstain Muslim minority from educating and pursuing their dreams.

(Inputs from various media sources)

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