UP under Yogi most aggressive in Madrasa upgradation ambitions

Uttar Pradesh has emerged as the most aggressive state in terms of targeting traditional schools known as madrasas for upgradation.

In the last two years, the state has sought to upgrade 10,854 madrasas under the Center’s ‘Quality Education in Madarsas’ scheme. This is more than 70% of the total proposals submitted by all states under the scheme during the period.

To do this, the state has sought central assistance of Rs 394.20 cr in the last two years.

In comparison, all the other states put together have sought only Rs 121.37 cr during the same period.

The Centrally Sponsored Scheme for providing Quality Education in Madarsas or SPQEM was launched in 2009 to encourage traditional Muslim schools to teach subjects such as science, mathematics, social studies, Hindi and English.

The money is used for buying new books, learning materials, computer labs and for hiring new teachers.

In the first seven years of its existence, the Center routed around Rs 1,000 cr under the scheme, at an average of around Rs 145 cr per year.

In the last two years, requests for another Rs 516 cr has come from various states, including Rs 394 cr from Uttar Pradesh.

On average, the UP government wants to spend Rs 3.63 lakh per madrasa to upgrade its facilities.

According to plans submitted by 13 states in the current and previous financial years, a total of 15,431 madrasas across the country are proposed to be upgraded.

The second highest seeker of funds under the madrasa upgrade program is also another BJP-ruled state, Madhya Pradesh.

MP wants to upgrade 1,685 madrasas at a cost of Rs 27.35 cr, which works out to an average of Rs 1.62 lakhs per madrasa.

The state that wants to spend the highest amount per madrasa was Karnataka. The southern state wants to upgrade a total of 45 madrasas at a cost of Rs 5.34 cr, which works out to Rs 11.85 lakh per institution.

Traditionally, madrasa education tends to be very limited, and is confined to language and religion. It is believed that introducing the children to science and mathematics will help improve their employability as adults.

It is also supposed to lead to the development of a scientific temper and rationalism.