The Assam government has decided to close all the state-run madrassas from November, Assam Health and Education Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma has said. “We will close down state-run madrassas in Assam from November. The government will release a notification in this regard,” Sarma said.
He announced that the state has launched a ‘Sneha Sparsh’ scheme under which state government will bear the cost of organ transplant in children below the age of 12 years.
“We have launched a scheme under which children who are below 12 years and require a liver transplant, kidney transplant or bone marrow transplant, all these services will be provided free of cost by the government,” Sarma said.
“A camp will be organized every month on 10th for everyone to avail the scheme. State government will fund the scheme which is named as “Sneha Sparsh”,” he added.
Responding to the state government’s statement, All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) chief Badruddin Ajmal said that if the state government decides to close down government-run madrasas, his party would re-open these educational educations once it comes to power in 2021 Assembly poll.
State govt cites lack of funds as the reason
As per the media reports, Assam has 614 government-aided recognised madrasas across Assam. The reports further suggest that Assam government spends around Rs 3-4 crore on madrasas every year.
State govt secular entity: Himanta Sarma
In February, Sarma had said that they would be converted to high and higher secondary schools teaching regular courses as it is not the job of the government to provide funds to institutions to impart religious teachings, Arabic or other such languages.
Sarma had said there were about 1,200 madrassas in Assam.
He further said that if people teach religion using their own money then it is no problem, however, if the state funds are used to teach holy Koran, then we have to teach Gita and Bible as well.
The government is a secular entity, therefore, it cannot fund organisations involved in religious teaching, he added.