New Delhi, 11 Nov. 2021: Chairman of the Jamaat-e-Islami Hind’s (JIH) education board Mujtaba Farooq has hailed the contributions of the first education minister of the country, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, on his birth anniversary.
In a press statement, the chairman of the JIH Markazi Taleemi Board (education board), said, “today is the birth anniversary of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, which is commemorated as the National Education Day every year. But presently, we are seeing a lack of interest and enthusiasm in its celebration. Even people with the biased mentality assume disrespecting him as a sign of patriotism. They also wrongly presume that a cleric was made the first Education Minister of the country, who was neither an educationist nor familiar with modern education. Whereas, Maulana Azad was a highly intellectual person, author of many books and edited prominent newspapers and journals which played a revolutionary role during the freedom struggle.”
Mr. Farooq further said, “unfortunately, attempts are being made to confine the pillars of the country’s integrity, just to their communities. The architect of the Constitution of India, Dr. Ambedkar, is being projected as the leader of the Dalits while the staunch defender of the united India, Maulana Azad, is being presented just as the representative of Muslims in the post-independent India.”
Briefing about Maulana Azad’s journalistic career and participation in freedom struggle, Mr. Farooq said, “Maulan Azad started publishing a journal Nairang-e-Aalam and was already an editor of a weekly Al-Misbah in 1900 at the early age of 12. In 1903, he brought out a monthly journal, Lissan-us-Sidq. He launched Al-Hilal newspaper at 20. When the paper’s popularity gained ground as a voice of the Indian independence movement, the British government put a ban on it. Later, Maulana Azad started a new journal, the Al-Balagh, which also got banned in 1916. Maulan Azad was imprisoned a number of times for actively participating in the freedom struggle.” “If, targeting such a personality is not ignorance and narrow-mindedness, what else could it be?” Mr Farooq asked.
Calling education one of the biggest challenges for the country today, Mr Farooq has pointed out that the country is still unable to establish justice and equality in the field of education, despite 75 years of independence.
Paying homage to the educational services of Maulana Azad, the JIH education board’s chairman called on the government to commemorate the day as one of the most significant days and launch an educational mission on the day.
Lauding that Maulana Azad laid down strong foundations for the education ministry through his invaluable services, Mr Farooq suggested conducting a research on the educational services and ideas of Maulana Azad in Indian universities. “Today we need to revive the ideas of Maulana for making the students morality strong and good members of the society. But it is unfortunate that education is being used to create communal hatred, which is a big challenge for the country. Besides, education is rapidly becoming a business, which is narrowing down the opportunities for poor but intelligent students of the country,” he added.
Mr Farooq urged the government to formulate policies and schemes providing equal educational opportunities to poor and rural students too.
On the occasion of Education Day, Mr Farooq also advised the Muslim community to conduct introspection of its progress in the field of education on individual and collective level. He also suggested that every educated person, who holds high positions and one who is affluent should sponsor one or two poor students.