Mumbai(dna): While the Maharashtra government’s move to classify madrasa students as “out of school children” has led to controversy, the Shiv Sena has defended the move, claiming that this should not be interpreted as one against religious education in the state.
The Shiv Sena has pointed out that the government made it clear that not only madrasas but also religious institutions of other faiths would be classified as non-schools. Thus, the government’s move should not be seen as an act of vendetta against Muslims, the Sena said.
In an editorial published in the party organ Saamna on Saturday, which has party president Uddhav Thackeray as the editor and Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Raut as the executive editor, the Sena attacked those opposing the state government’s decision. It said that protests are being held only due to fears that if Muslims start thinking independently, parties whose existence lies on playing vote-bank politics will be in danger.
“The government has taken a decision to treat madrasas that do not teach subjects like English, Science and Mathematics as non-schools. This move should not be seen as one which is pre-conceived or which is intended to strike a blow to religious education. On the contrary, this should be taken as a way to get Muslim children in the mainstream,” the editorial said.
“Muslims have been caught between Islam, Islamic education and extremism. Thus, while the world is progressing with each passing day, Muslims are only stuck between ignorance and illiteracy,” it said.
“If Muslims too start thinking independently, what will happen to the contractors of Islam and parties like the Congress that thrive on such vote bank politics? This is what is leading them to oppose the government’s decision,” it added.