SOC on National Security calls for Committee to regulate Madrasa institutions | Daily News


SOC on National Security calls for Committee to regulate Madrasa institutions

A Committee to regulate Madrasa institutions should be established under the Department of Muslim Religious and Cultural Affairs, the Sectoral Oversight Committee(SOC) on National Security has recommended to the government.

“The proposal of establishing a Madrassa regulating committee has surfaced after the Easter Sunday attack and it is comprised of 11 members. It has been reported to our committee that there is already an agreement within the Muslim society that the said committee should comprise of officers of the Department of Muslim affairs, acclaimed experts in the Muslim society and non-Muslim moderate experts and that the committee should not be represented by the members of the Jamiatul Ulama council.” the Sectoral Oversight Committee on National Security observed.

The Committee which assessed and forwarded proposals and recommendations on strengthening the national security of the country has observed the importance of all the children in Sri Lanka getting an education following the general education policy of the country. It said, “all the syllabuses taught in all educational institutions should be subjected to the approval of the National Institute of Education. This should be relevant to all the international schools and the schools in which the national syllabuses are not taught.”

The Committee has also recommended that the Madrasa Institutions should be considered as special educational institutions and they must be run as educational institutions that train Islamic Moulavis.

The report of the Sectoral Oversight Committee on National Security was presented to the House on February 19, 2020.

The Committee report observes that the Non-government Islamic religious education institutions that teach unaccredited syllabuses are mainly registered or unregistered madrasa institutions.

The most unsatisfactory situation with regard to the negligence of national virtues from the education system is the functioning of a group of schools that have been registered as international schools to which non-Islamic students are not admitted under any circumstances, the Committee report observed. It also observes that there was a mushrooming of such schools in main cities with a high Muslim population.

“The recent developments related to those schools have shown a tendency that mislead Muslim children through lectures delivered in English through the internet by the orators like Jainul Abdheen, the leader of Thouheed Jammad in South India and Sakeer Naik, the founder of Peace TV channel of which the telecast is prohibited in Sri Lanka after the Easter Sunday attack and against whom allegations have been made for spreading Islamic extremism using Mumbai as the Centre. It seems that the possibility of developing a new young Muslim generation with a propensity against Sri Lankan national values and Islamic values can be a threat to the Sri Lankan nationality, inter-ethnic harmony and the national security.” the Committee further observed.

The Committee also observes that “The syllabuses taught in Madrasa institutions are not nationally accredited in any way. At the same time, they have no international or any other accreditation like the syllabuses taught in international schools. Neither a national institute for an international institute is there to check the quality of Madrasa institutions. Having a set of Islamic religious institutions that are not subjected to monitoring or regulation according to the national education policy is an obstacle to ascertain the development of skills needed for the twenty-first century or to develop nationalistic feelings as Sri Lankans.

Facts submitted before the committee about Madrasa institutions reveal that an in-depth study is needed. Further investigations conducted by the Committee revealed that Ministry of Muslim Affairs, Department of Muslim Affairs or any other government institution do not possess an acceptable report on the number of Madrasa institutions in Sri Lanka. Therefore, there are complex problems concerning the number of children in Madrasa schools, the content and the quality of education given there, the number of teachers, qualifications of the teachers, basic facilities for children, whether teachers are foreign or local, the type of registration, what the financial sources are and how they manage finance.”

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