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BJP hits out at Mamata's madrasas move

Staff Reporter

KOLKATA: The West Bengal unit of the BJP on Saturday criticised Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's decision to recognise 10,000 madrasas despite reports that Central intelligence had found most of the madrasas, operating along the Bangladesh border, to be “anti-Indian” in nature.

Ms. Banerjee had announced on Friday that though the government would recognise these madrasas there would be no financial assistance to them due to the State's poor finances. Describing it as a “revolutionary decision”, she had said that the madrasas would now be able to avail themselves of various Central schemes, some of which would also benefit them financially.

State BJP president Rahul Sinha in a statement accused Ms. Banerjee of “playing with national integrity” in order to “appease a particular community”. He pointed out that Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram had recently told journalists that activists of the Bangladesh-based terror group Harkat-ul-Jihad-ul-Islami (HuJI) have a strong presence along the international border with a number of madrasas being under their direct control. “The Central government report says that most of the madrasas are anti-Indian,” Mr. Sinha said. Asserting that the BJP welcomed the approval of “real Indian madrasas,” he said Ms. Banerjee could have taken the reports by the Intelligence Bureau as well as Central and local intelligence units into consideration before arriving at the decision.

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