LUCKNOW: The Uttar Pradesh government has cleared a proposal to included books published by the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) in the curriculum taught by madarsas in the state.
Courses on mathematics, science, social sciences, geography, and home science will be made mandatory for madarsa students from the next 2018-19 academic year. This will apply to 8,521 madarsas that have registered for the central government's madarsa modernisation scheme.
Until now, these subjects are being taught in madarsas for classes up to eighth standard. They are optional for the higher classes.
In addition, the Arabic and Deeniyat (religion) syllabus for madarsa students is also being revamped by spreading the subject matter from standards I to XII. The state government has taken the advice of experts from Aligarh Muslim University (AMU), Lucknow University, Khwaja Moinudding Chishti Urdu Arabi Farsi University, Lucknow-based Integral University, Nadwatul Ulama and other prominent seminaries for syllabus revision.
Deputy chief minister and education minister Dinesh Sharma tweeted: "After approval from the state government, Uttar Pradesh Madrasa Board has started preparation to teach students from NCERT books."
He said the initiative is aimed at increasing employment opportunities for madarsa students and equip them to compete with peers.
A draft of the revamped syllabus has been prepared by the state’s Minority Welfare Department along with the UP Madarsa Board of Education. It will be finalised after a meeting with the stakeholders including madrasa principals, teachers and members of the Muslim community in November-December.
Maulana Rashid Khalid Firangi Mahali, a member of the All-India Muslim Personal Law Board, welcomed the move to bring about uniformity in education.
There are over 19,000 recognised and 560 aided madarsas in UP. In August this year, the state government launched a portal of the UP Madrasa Board for online registration of all Islamic educational institutions in a bid to check alleged "irregularities".
However, despite two deadline extensions, 2,682 madrasas have not yet furnished their details on the website.
Notably, the proposal also provides for online payment of salaries to madarsa staff.