OpinionEdit Corner

Keep a watch on Madrassas!

A purported video of a boy chanting slogans against Hindu and Christian communities during ‘Save the Republic’ rally conducted by Popular Front of India (PFI) on May 21, 2022, that went viral is disturbing but not shocking. Indoctrinating children to hate non-Islamic followers is the cornerstone in the spreading of Islamic radicalism.

Last year, Islamic radicalised children took out a protest demanding the beheading of Hindu cleric Yati Narsinghanand. The children were shouting, ‘Gustakh-E-Rasool Ki Ek Hi Saza, Sar Tan Se Juda’ which literally means, “If you insult our Prophet, there is only one punishment, that your head must be decapitated.”

Terrorism has a religion. Islamic radicalism is doctrine under which Islamic terrorism germinates.
I do not for one moment think that all followers of Islam are terrorists. That is certainly not true. Over the years in my life having grown up in the Middle East and India, I have forged friendships with many followers of Islam globally and not all of them are terrorists.

But this truth also cannot be denied or glossed over that in most terror attacks around the world in the last 20-plus years have been carried out by Islamic terror organisations.

Radical Islam is taught to followers of Islam from a young age in the Madrassas.

Post the September 9/11 terror attack in the US, globally, Madrassas drew added attention when it became known that several Taliban leaders and Al Qaeda members had studied in Madrassas in Pakistan. These revelations have led to the accusations that Madrassas promote Islamic extremism, militancy and are a recruiting ground for terrorism.

Some Madrassas are alleged to be having links with terrorist organisations like Taliban, ISIS and Al Qaeda. Intelligence agency opine that Madrassas promote radicalism and religious fanaticism among Muslim children who then turn out to be terrorists in the future due to what their minds are fed.
Concerns have also been expressed over the spread of Islamic radicalism through schools, universities and mosques.

There some global analysts who opine that Islamic radicalism is threatening the existence of more moderate beliefs and practices in other parts of the Muslim world.
In a research study conducted by European Foundation of South Asian Studies titled, ‘Human Trafficking, Religious Indoctrination & Radicalization’ it states, “Radicalization and religious indoctrination must be perceived as part of the whole process that leads to the recruitment of people by terrorist organizations, and therefore the current focus on securitization should also encompass integration and education. Ignorance, in this case on both sides, breeds radicalism, with terrorism as its outlet.”

It further states, “The Madrassas are considered by many families as the only realistic option towards access of education for their children, especially among those who come from poor backgrounds, since these Madrassas provide food and shelter for their students.”

A teacher proposes to educate these children at the Madrassa and subsequently promises to find them employment in the service of Islam. Madrassa students have a tendency of becoming highly devoted to their masters, where the authoritarian doctrinaire education established on memorization inhibits even the slightest expression of free thought or individual will, and gives a green light to religious fanaticism and incites a desire to confront anyone pointed out as an unbeliever by their teacher. The path following recruitment relies on the age of the child involved, where youngsters (between 8 and 12) are preferred. The Madrassas are usually in remote areas and maintain a limited number of students so that they do not draw significant attention. The juveniles are refused any contact with the outside world and are indoctrinated in sectarian extremism, hatred for non-Muslim and anti-Western beliefs, the report revealed.

In another study paper published by the European Foundation for South Asian Studies prior to COVID-19, it was discussed how Pakistani Madrassas continue to contribute to radicalisation and religious terrorism in Jammu & Kashmir.

In fact, some intelligence reports have revealed that Madrassas in Pakistan have been inviting those who have been involved in the J&K conflict in order to inspire their students to actively participate in it.

The European Foundation for South Asian Studies further highlighted that the madrassas are well equipped to radicalise their students and various terrorist groups in Pakistan in an attempt to exert radical Islam and the idea of Holy War for the purposed of J&K through Madrassas.

In fact, in central intelligence agencies investigate the unrest caused by certain sections of the radicalised Islamic population in India, in particular terror-linked organisation like the Popular Front of India (PFI) the authorities in their deep dive into the nexus behind the radicalisation and indoctrination it will find that some Madrassas funded through dubious organisations in India, Middle East and Turkey are behind the grooming of hate amongst young Muslims in India and that is causing more damage to Indian Muslims.

This mission to spread hate in India while playing victim of atrocities being a minority intensified post the Abrogation of Article 370. Islamic radicals aim to spread Islamic terrorism across India. They have mobilised their young population across different cities in India to create mayhem and if we intelligence agencies the stone-pelting trail its funders and its recruiting modules, you will find a devious and planned operations. The grooming ground are the Madrassas for the hate and instigation.

As per a report published by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) recruitment of children by terrorist groups in a worldwide phenomenon.

It further states that violent and extremist groups are rampantly using children to boost their visibility like Boko Haram, ISIS.

In analysis conducted in the UNODC report on six-month data set of ISIS propaganda it revealed a total of 254 events that included images of children, 38 percent of the images were of children engaged in acts of violence, which were used to shock the public and show the ruthlessness of the group.

If we look into a data-set of terror attacks in the last five-years, you will see that most terror attacks were from Islamic terror organisations. In 2019, for example, there 8300 terror attacks around the world and 25,000 fatalities, most terror attacks were done by Islamic terror organisations.

Taliban a terror organisation now ruling over Afghanistan due to numerous failed foreign policies of the United States had carried out reportedly 1375 terror attacks in 2019. The Houthi carried out 579 attacks in 2019. The dreaded ISIS executed 461 terror attacks in 2019. Boko Haram had reportedly been responsible for 348 terror attacks in 2019. And Al Shabaab carried out 330 terror attacks in 2019 while the Fulani Extremists of Mali had 118 terror attacks reported against them.

In order to curb terrorism around the world, global intelligence agencies must find a legal way to break the bounds of indoctrination happening in Madrassas. India too needs to find a solution to the hate being spread through Madrassas. Islamic radicalism is instilled in the minds of some young Muslims at a young age, that germinates into Islamic terrorism.

 

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Savio Rodrigues

Savio Rodrigues Founder & Editor-in-Chief GoaChronicle.com
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