Triggering political row, Assam Education minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Saturday said all government-run madrassas and Sanskrit tols will be closed in the state. A notification to this effect will be issued in November.
He reiterated that the Madrassa Education Board will be dissolved and all state-run madrassas will be converted into high schools. However, new admissions will be held for all as regular students.
Sarma pointed out that the Sanskrit tols (institutes) will be handed over to the Kumar Bhaskarvarma Sanskrit University and these will be converted into centres of learning and research where Indian culture, civilisation and nationalism will be studied.
“This step has been taken by the government to ensure that students get regular education under the Secondary Education Board of Assam (SEBA),” he said.
When reporters asked if the step was taken with an eye on the state elections, which is likely early next year, the minister said, “How can this be an election issue when we are only closing the government-run madrassas and not the private ones.”
There are 610 government-run madrassas in Assam with the state spending Rs 260 crore annually, Sarma said.
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