Recognition of “Qawmi” Degree
Prime minister Sheikh Hasina made an announcement that her government ,from now on, will recognize “ Dawra Degree of Qawmi Madrasa as equivalent to Master’s degree in Islamic studies and Arabic . The decision was made public at a dinner program held for more 350 Islamic scholars and principals of different madrasa. She said “ I am announcing that keeping the unique character of Qawmi madrasa aand based on the basic principles of Darul Uloom Deoband , the certificates of Dawra-e – Hadith of Qawmi madrasa has been given the status of Master’s in Islamic studies and Arabic. She also pointed out that there many criticisms and harsh comments by many people of other countries about Qawmi madrasa but , she said , I always protested this and I always felt that the government needs to give recognition to Qawmi education.”
This announcement was received by overwhelming appreciation by all people in general and academe circle in particular as this was a long cherished goal of many Islamic scholars , past and present, who tried to explore new horizon of work opportunities, broader space in the society for thousand of the graduates of Qawmi madrasa so that they can better the nation , its religious values and harness all their capabilities in the service of the country they live. No recognition by government was a big obstacle that was finally removed .
Different mass media covered the subject with great deal of importance. No wonder, event it created some political debate in the political arena . As usual, anti- Islam forces ,mainly communist and lefts were angered. They had long opposed everything that is religious, moral values and help people live in tune to Islamic beliefs and creeds.
We know, it is simply a circular. It has to be formulated a law . But, it is definitely a right and commendable step towards the right direction .No doubt, Awami League under the leadership of Sheikh Hasina made a historic and courageous decision . New opportunities, new possibilities and bright potentials are waiting for thousands of graduates of Qawmi madrasa each year . They will be able to pursue their higher studies at universities and centers of higher studies at home and abroad.
We apprecitiate the statement of Prime Minster that says “ education began in the sub continent of India with Qawmi system. No education process is perfect if it is empty of religious education.” She recalled great sacrifices rendered by men of courage and piety in these institutes of education in liberation movement against British rule and occupation. She assured the meeting that her government will intervene in curriculum and management of madrasa.
One thing must be mentioned that recognition of Qawmi degree is not something to be afraid of . Both India and Pakistan did it many years before. They never faced any security or otherwise problems as some vested quarters here try to prove through media gossip. We were present here and all over the world and will continue to be present whether or not government recognizes us . Qawmi Madrasa has its own noble goals. It is satisfied with no less than protecting Islam, spreading its true and peaceful messages and help Muslims know their religion etc. If they feel any danger in playing their historic roles in the framework of recognition, I think, they will not hesitate a moment to forsake the recognition matter all together . After all, Islam or any subject of it for that matter, is above any bargaining.
We welcome the circular and gratefully thank Prime Minister for her historic decision. We hope, necessary procedures will be taken soon to formulate a law in this regard.
—————————————————————————————————————————————————————————-By: Obaid Ullah Hamzah