Written by Hazrat Maulana Mohammed Ilyas Barabankavi.
Acquisition of knowledge is binding on all Muslims (both men and women without any discrimination)
-Prophet Muhammed ﷺ
It is evident from the prophetic saying in aforementioned Hadith “Acquisition of knowledge is binding (obligatory) on every Muslim men and women” that the acquisition of knowledge is obligatory for women in the same way as in the case of men.
But despite this fact, though, a lot of resources, communications, madaris and schools are available for men but they are very few for women. That is why the majority of women is deprived of religious education in spite of the evident fact that women’s population is more than half of the Muslims community. God has given the women brain and ability for their religious and spiritual progress. In fact, the mother’s lap is the first school where every human being is brought up. Some noble persons have exemplified the child with tape-recorder, as he continues to instill in his mind whatever movements he observes in his mother’s lap and reacts on it later. Islamic history bears witness that noble persons of Muslim community are the result of a good mother’s upbringing. It is sad and shameful that the majority of our population is not only unaware of their religion but fearful and deprived too, and interprets it as outmoded. The women are valuable part of our community, so depriving them of religious education is like pushing the community towards polytheism, innovation in religion, mischief and disturbance.
Islam elevated the women to the higher position and provided to them respect, honor, shyness, neatness and morality after taking them out of illiteracy and anonymity. As a result, high ranking women were born in Islamic society to whom noble companies would consult about religious matters and consider their response as a final solution. Mother of believers, Hazrat Aisha (RH) is its fine example. Whenever the noble companions would face any complex matter they unanimously consulted Hazrat Aisha (RH) and would get satisfactory solution from there. Hadith and Islamic history are witness of these facts.
But it is unfortunate that, in spite of all this, we did not make good arrangements of religious education for our girls.
That is why they got trapped in West’s baseless and vulgar culture. For this basic and main reason they should be given full knowledge and information for evaluating themselves. Otherwise, we cannot mould their minds towards Islamic values. In this westernized period, only those fortunate women can serve Islam, whose foreheads shine with the deeds of prophetic knowledge and whose eyes are twinkling with belief and confidence and whose hearts are full of Quran and prophetic knowledge.
Alhamdulillah, currently, some such institutions have been established at some places where girls are being made acquainted with Quran, Hadith, Fiqh and Islamic history. Among these institutions, Jamia Tul Banat al-Islamia is the first religious institution for girls’ education and training in Delhi and its suburb where 800 students are studying. Out of them 700 students are being provided fooding and lodging facilities in Jamia itself.
Seeing the day by day increasing eagerness towards education among the girls, it is felt that this important step should have been taken much earlier, but it is God’s will that He gave strength for this work now and also gave day by day progress in this work by His grace. In this scenario, it is reasonable to approach and request to the contributors on behalf of Jamia Tul-Banat al-Islamia that they should take part open-heartedly in this noble cause to retain the sentiments and eagerness of this community, and help the Jamia to provide good resources and facilities of education and training to the Muslim girls. It is the duty of every individual of Muslim community to contribute as much as possible.