North India

‘Madrasas should disappear, Muslims originally Hindus’: Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma stokes row

"If Muslim children are smart, it is because of their "Hindu past"

New Delhi: Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma has stoked a fresh controversy by saying that madrasas should cease to exist and all Indian Muslims were originally Hindus.

“The word ‘madrasa’ should disappear. Teach the Quran at home, but children should be taught Science and Maths in school. When we [the Bharatiya Janata Party] came to power, we felt that the state’s money should not be spent on imparting religious education of a particular religion.” The Print quoted Sarma as saying.

He told this while speaking about the law in Assam abolishing state-funded madrasas, at an event organised by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) in Delhi on May 22.

Saying that no one is a born Muslim in India, he claimed that Muslims are originally Hindus. He further asserted that if Muslim children are smart, it is because of their “Hindu past”.

Sarma went on to say that children will not be able to think of becoming doctors and engineers till the word ‘madrasa’ exists.

Times Now quoted him as saying, “All Muslims were Hindus. No one was born a Muslim (in India). Everyone was a Hindu in India. So, if a Muslim child is extremely meritorious, I will give partial credit to his Hindu past.” He told this while replying to a question that students in madrasas are extremely talented, they can memorise every word of the Quran easily.

Sarma reminded that in 2020, the Assam government decided to dissolve all government-run madrasas and convert them into general educational institutions to facilitate a secular education system.

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