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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 1588

Gurudas Kamat Assures MMERC Of All Help

Mumbai , 24 April, (

Recently, there was a ray of hope for Oshiwara residents and Markazul Ma’arif Education and Research Centre (MMERC) when Gurudas Kamat, MP, former Union Minister along with a posse of MLAs and corporators from the area visited the site last Friday, and took stock of the pathetic situation of the Markazul Ma’arif Masjid and institution.

He talked to MMERC heads, Mr. Sirajudin Ajmal and Maul. Burhanuddin Qasmi, who apprised him of the legal hurdles in the way of renovation. He assured that an amicable legal solution for their problems would be found soon. This would benefit the students, the staff members and the residents who come to the mosque to pray.

Matters to resolve the legal tangle are still in abeyance and the situation is fluid. It would be in the interest of all that the way is cleared for the land to be legally owned so that the height of the cement sheets is raised to relieve the people from the scorching heat and the rains.

MMERC has been rendering yeoman service to the community by providing madrasa students from all over India with a two-year course in Diploma in English Language and Literature (DELL) since 1994. A sizeable number of students after being screened through a competitive test and interview are admitted to the programme. Most sections of society in India and abroad, especially intellectual and opinion makers including the media, on various occasions have praised the activities of MMERC for bringing madrasa students into the mainstream. But the students are living and studying in a pathetic condition. For the last one decade the institute is facing a lot of problems owing to lack of physical infrastructure.

The 1992-93 riot victims had set up a mosque in 1993 which is still being frequented by thousands of people of the area. Later they have offered the trusteeship of the mosque and its environs to the MMERC. When an attempt was made to buy the property, it was found that it was government land.

In 2004, MHADA had allotted a portion of the land to MMERC, by legalising the existing structure to facilitate the educational and social activities of the institution.

Since 2004, MMERC officials have been running from pillar to post, to pay the cost of the land and procure legal documents to carry out urgently required renovation and repair work in the existing structure. This has become necessary as the students of the DELL programme and the people who visit the mosque for prayers have to suffer the brunt of the oppressive heat of the Mumbai summer. The structure is a cement-shed which is seven-and-half feet high and gets heated under the burning rays of the sun and despite ceiling fans, the people perspire heavily and are unable to carry out their prayers or any work properly. They work in miserable conditions, day in and day out.

MMERC officials are facing bureaucratic apathy and despite the fact that the ministers, have been apprised, again and again of the problems being faced by the institution, nothing has been done so far. They are too busy with their own work to look into the matter and provide a permanent solution.

Among those who visited the Pataliputra site along with Mr. Gurudas Kamat were Baldev Khosa, MLA, and corporators such as Changez Multani, Mohsin Haider, Jyotsna DJ, Bala Amberkar and other social workers of the area.

- Asian Tribune –

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