After the Centre announced scholarships for 50 million minority students over the next 5 years, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath has issued directives to improve the quality of education in madarsas.
Besides, Adityanath, while reviewing the progress of the minorities’ welfare department in Lucknow, ordered the raising of qualification/eligibility criteria for madarsa teachers and making the recruitment process transparent.
Further, he stressed on efficient distribution of scholarships to minority students, so that more students could be benefited under the scheme.
Under the central scholarship roadmap, 50 million beneficiary minority students have to be girls, according to union minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi. The scholarships would be provided for secondary, senior secondary, professional and technical studies. It includes nearly a million Begum Hazrat Mahal girls’ scholarship.
The girls from minority communities, dropping out of school, would be linked to education and employment through ‘bridge courses’ from reputed educational institutions. Madarsa teachers would be trained in mainstream subjects like English, Hindi, Maths, Science and Computer.
Interestingly, in UP Annual Budget 2019-20, the Adityanath government had slashed the minorities’ welfare department budget by almost 50 per cent even though the Budget size rose by 12 per cent.
Compared to the minorities’ welfare budget of Rs 2,757 crore in Annual Budget 2018-19, the state pared the outlay to Rs 1,401 in Annual Budget 2019-20 tabled in the state legislature in February 2019.
The current Budget made a provision of Rs 942 crore for scholarship scheme for students belonging to the minority communities. Besides, Rs 459 crore was allocated for the modernisation of the Arabic Persian madarsas operating in UP.
In its first UP Budget 2017-18, the Adityanath government had slashed the minorities’ department budget by 19 per cent to Rs 2,475 crore from Rs 3,055 crore in 2016-17, when Akhilesh Yadav was at the helm. However, in the second Annual Budget, the state had hiked the outlay by 11.39 per cent to Rs 2,757 crore.
The department had come under spotlight in 2011 after the Samajwadi Party government had raised the outlay by more than 81 per cent from Rs 1,143 crore in 2011-12 to Rs 2,074 crore in 2012-13. From 2011-12 to 2016-17, the minorities’ welfare department budget logged growth of 167 per cent from a mere Rs 1,143 crore to Rs 3,055 crore.