A frank exposition by Maulana Nadeemul Wajidee
(Translated from Urdu by Raihan Nezami)
The fight for possession of a madrasa situated in the vicinity of Muzaffarnagar has turned into a battle-field shedding blood of the innocent people. It is an ancient and quite well-known madrasa. The two groups have been at daggers drawn over the issue of possession for a long time which has taken the worst shape now, resulting in a fierce fight on 3rd of December 2009.
Probably the conflicting factions were fully prepared for the battle. So hundreds of people from both sides gathered in no time and a fierce fight took place by pelting stones and attacking with bamboo sticks. Some people got injured. This included someone named Alam whose photograph has also been published by newspapers.
The purpose of the present discussion is to find out the guilty person or the group behind the tragic incident, and the committee legally authorized to run the madrasa aw well as the opposing group which is trying to dismantle the ruling faction. This incident has not only insulted the Muslim intellectual scholars and the madrasa committee, but also the whole madrasa community.
In the age of electronic media, journalists are eagerly waiting for any controversial issue. The issue of conflict over a mosque or madrasa became a hot topic for news and debate. Hindi and Urdu newspapers published this news with great pomp and show. The general masses too got a hot topic for debate. People generally criticize the functioning of madrasa managements anyway. In the prevailing situation, the madrasa management committee should have been very cautious. Contrary to it, madrasas are rapidly changing into a battle-field enhancing sectarian fight among Muslims. Every group is trying to defame another one and capture power acquiring all the property and the wealth. Such people try to fulfill their mission by hook or by crook; some of them succeed in their mission in dethroning the ruling group by malpractices against the ruling party. They even open a new madrasa in the same locality to annoy and provoke if they fail to defame and dethrone them.
The fight for possession of the madrasa management is on the rise. Beginning with big madrasas, this phenomenon has now affected the small, local madrasas too. Hardly any madrasa is spared from this internal conflict. Ironically, the teaching in the madrasas is based upon love, cooperation and unity. We always talk about fraternal love and communal harmony within the Muslim community, but in practice all our hearts and souls are devoid of such feelings.
The madrasa officials must be more responsible as they are in charge of the fountain-heads of Islamic education, and they are the protector of the Islamic culture and civilization. If they are not disciplined and well-organised, we can imagine the sad plight of the behaviour of general masses. How can one ask and expect general Muslims to maintain love, cooperation and fraternal feelings among themselves? The establishment of madrasa and its management is a religious duty. There is no possibility of any conflict and difference of opinion if the responsible people realize their moral and religious duty. It is clear with the latest developments that they have become corrupt and are suffering from avarice.
One of many defects among madrasa officials is that they consider it their personal property; the situation of teachers and employees is not better than that of slaves. First, there is no concept of Majlis-e-Shoora (management committee) in madrasas; if there is any in Majlis-e-Shoora in any particular madrasa, the manager or the secretary appoints their relatives and friends or like-minded people who can be expected to blindly agree to and support the decisions of the management. In such a dictatorial atmosphere, differences and clashes will obviously erupt. The undemocratic and anti-Islamic behaviour of the manager or the secretary is a great reason behind such volcanic eruptions.
Second, the intention of the opposing group is also not honest, they protest out of greed and desire for power and control over the madrasa management. Both parties should have very honest intentions while running a madrasa, or criticizing the functionaries. But, unfortunately that is not their motive. They consider the madrasa as no better than a property or money-making enterprise. Many things like investment of money, hard work and labour are required to run a factory and there is every possibility of loss, too. In contrast, madrasas are simply profit-makiing institutions without any risk of loss or need for investment.
As long as madrasas are considered profit-making enterprises, requiring no investment and no fear of incurring losses, such terrible clashes will continue to erupt as happened in Muzaffarnagar or has been happening in other cities or towns.
Last year, a similar nasty incident took place in a madrasa at Thana Bhawan in the aforesaid district; now the matter is pending in the court. The attitude of the famous scholar Hakeemul Ummat Hazrat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanavi (May Allah be pleased with him) of the same area was totally different. Once some mean people decided to remove Hazrat Thanavi from the madrasas and Khanqah (shrine). He himself has written, “I was always ready to vacate even if a child asked me to. The companions were worried about the shelter, but with the grace of Allah-e-Kareem the conspirators became ashamed. Even some leaders requested to stay as it might have besmirched their reputation. I simply said that I was obeying Haji Saheb, how could I leave the place. I didn’t like to take the matter to a court in such a terrible situation”. (Al-Qaulul Jaleel, page-66, courtesy Al-Ilm wa Al-Ulema, page 88)
It is a great tragedy of the present time; the people who are running their institutions in his name are running around in courts, wasting their precious time and hard-earned money of the community on the fake and pointless cases of conflict and controversies.
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