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Deeni Madaras Project

HISTORY OF DENI MADARAS

 

Deeni Madaris are the remnants of a long history representing the brilliant tradition in the field of education. This education system produced graduates like Jabir bin Hayyan, Ibne Khuldun, Ibne Sina, Abubakar Zakariyya, Imam Ghazali, Imam Razi and Shah Waliullah. Nawab Saadullah Khan, the Prime Minister of the Mughal Empire during Shah Jehan, regime and the great religious genius of Muslim India, Mujaddid Alf-e-Sani had been class mate of his highness. This system was the first casuality after the British took over. The literacy rate in Punjab was 100% among the Muslims and 84% on the whole in early nineteenth century. In addition to Islamic books, the subjects of Algebra, Geometry and logic were also included in Madaris at that time. Later on, the Indian in general and Muslims in particular were kept away from science, technology and other skills in pursuance of the policy laid down by Macaulay in 1835. By 1857, almost all the major educational institutions were closed. In such circumstances the religious leaders established religious institutions namely Deeni Madaris to improve religious education. After the creation of Pakistan, the status-quo was maintained for about four decades.

 

DEENI MADARIS OF PAKISTAN

 

There are about 22000 Deeni Madaris in Pakistan (about 17000 are registered) which impart religious education to about 2.5 million students (male and female). These are independent institutions and they prescribe their own curriculum in consultation with their scholars and Ulama. The curriculum comprises Quran, Hadith, Fiqh and other relevant religious courses, known as "Dars-e-Nizami."

Madrasa is an Arabic word which means an institution where education is imparted. Here Madrasa is used for religious institution. Jamia, Dar-ul-Uloom or Taleem-ul-Quran are used for Madrasa as well. The female institutions are called Madrasa-tul-Banat. The head of Madrasa is known as Muhtamim/Nazim/Principal, etc. The majority of Madaris are fulltime (24 hours residential) institutions where free accommodation, books, meal and all basic necessities are provided to the students. Sports and health facilities are also provided in some institutions. Some Madaris have highly qualified teachers like Ph.D, M.Phil, M.A. and Mufti degree holders etc. for teaching religious education including formal education. The Mufti guides the society in Islamic jurisprudence. In some Madaris well equipped libraries help the religious scholars in research and reference studies. The Madaris, therefore, play an important role in imparting education from grass root up to higher level.