HC dismisses plea to regulate education in madrasas

HC dismisses plea to regulate education in madrasas

Image used for representation. Photo credit: DH

The Delhi High Court on Monday dismissed a plea seeking regulation of education imparted in 'madrasas' and 'gurukuls' in the country, saying it is akin to vocational or coaching classes and one can always opt-out of it.

"These are like tuition or coaching classes. There are drawing classes also. Then there are so many vocational classes. They are imparting some education. Take it or do not take it," a bench of Chief Justice D N Patel and Justice C Hari Shankar said.

The court said there are various types of coaching and tuition classes, including vocational training, in the society, and governing or regulating them is within the powers of the central government.

The bench said any policy for regulating such entities has to be framed by the government, which is capable to take a decision on it, and there is no reason for the court to provide any guidance.

"We, therefore, see no reason to entertain the writ petition and do not want to give any direction to the government with regard to framing of policy," the court said and dismissed the petition by a Congress MLA from West Bengal and an RTI activist from the state.

Right to Information (RTI) activist Sunil Saraogi and Congress MLA Akhruzzaman, in their petition filed through advocate Vidhan Vyas, claimed that the academic syllabus followed in these institutions "are still stuck in the 18th century with the Holy Quran, Urdu and Persian being the only subjects".

"This severely impacts the job prospects of students studying at these madrasas," the petition had alleged.

It also alleged that the "children attending such institutions are unable to compete with their peers with respect to job and future opportunities".

"This will ultimately result in a section of 'young India' not being able to develop their faculties fully and contribute to the task of nation-building," the petition said.

According to the petition, there are around 3,000 madrasas in the national capital alone with about 3.6 lakh students studying in these institutions.

It had also sought a direction to the authorities to "bring all the madrasas, maktabahs and gurukuls within a regulated and recognised legal framework by mandatory registration".