impassioned speech in Arabic and recite Naat Khuwaniin Urdu.I had a frequent visit to this Institution especially inconnection with the Annual day celebrations. On thatvery day I sit among the students to listen the details of the programme presented by the students on that day.The management focused on the importance of academic education and on how Islam positivelyencourages it.Apart from Islamic education in the institution, theacademic education is an indispensable part of the Jamia curriculum; The Jamia is till 10
grade and isaffiliated to J&K State Board of School Education. Theresult is also very excellent as the institute gets 10-12distinctions every year in the matriculation examinationcontrolled by J&K Board of school education in thisimprovised area of Bhalessa.The welcome addresses over on the annual day of maddersa, I sit with the students and discuss theirstudies. One of them wants to know how to secureadmission in the English department of the university of Jammu. Another wants to know how he can I prepare forKashmir Administrative services exam after completingmy graduation in Islamic studies or Arabic. A third asksme, in impeccable English, 'Why are Muslims, especiallythe ulema of Deoband, thought of as terrorists by many,while they had actually played a leading role in India'santi-colonial struggle?'The students and their teachers insist that the Deobandielders are not against modern education as is commonlyimagined. Mufti Ishrat Mattu who was graduated from Jamia argues with me, 'Islam says that all beneficialknowledge can be acquired and so our ulema have neveropposed what is good in the modern educationalsystem. What they were opposed to, however, wasWestern culture. We can and, indeed, should acquireknowledge of all the beneficial modern disciplines,provided this is done according to our culture and that ithelps us become better Muslims.