Anjuman-i-Islam Mumbai

Author: Mohsin Aziz

Anjuman-i-Islam, Mumbai, is perhaps the oldest and largest Muslim Institution working in the field of modern education in India. It was founded in 1874 (a year before Sir Syed established Madrasatul Uloom in 1875 at Aligarh) by a small group of highly educated and wealthy Muslims from the then Bombay led by Badruddin Tayabji. The group gathered at Badruddin Tayabji’s house and the blueprint was prepared. The gathering included the three founders of Anjuman-i-Islam: Badruddin Tayabji, Camruddin Tayabji and Philanthropist Nakhuda Mohammed Ali Roghay. Besides these social worker Munshi Ghulam Mohammed and few others were also present. The group decided to start a school. Munshi Ghulam Mohammed had already travelled to North Indian cities such as Delhi and Lahore where Muslims had already established schools named Anjuman, hence the inspiration to name it Anjuman I Islam. Money was also collected for the purpose on the occasion. Out of the total collection of 36000 Indian rupees, Nakhuda Mohammad Ali Roghay donated 10000 rupees while Badruddin Tayabji donated 7500 rupees to start a school for Muslim (Anjuman-i-Islam, 2013). In todays terms, these were substantial donations. Of the three founders, Badruddin Tayabji is most well known. He was the first Indian Judge of the Bombay High Court and third president of the Indian National Congress (Anjuman-i-Islam, 2020; Wajihuddin, M., 2019). Camruddin Tayabji is the elder brother of Badruddin Tayabji was the first Indian Solicitor. Mohammad Ali Roghay was one of the leading merchants of Bombay at that time. He was trading partner of Sir Jamsetjee Jejeebhoy and made his fortune in country trade with China. He owned a number of ships, hence the title Nakhuda, which in Urdu means Captain of ship or seafaring master (Ranganathan, M., 2019).

Anjuman’s journey started in February 1874 with one school which had three teachers and 120 students. As the number of students arose, a permanent building was required. The foundation of the present day main building was laid by the then Bombay Governor, Lord Reay, on 31 May 1890. The building was completed and inaugurated on 27 February 1893 by the then Governor of Bombay, George Harris (Wajihuddin, 2019).

An important milestone in the story of Anjuman-i-Islam was the establishment of Karimi library. It was established in 1898 by Kazi Abdul Karim Pulbandari who was owner of various publishing houses such as Karimi Press and Matba Fat-hul Karim in Mumbai. He gave a house valued 25000 Indian rupees that time in Mumbai as Waqf for the upkeep of the library (Nadvi, H., 1950).

Later it was one of the grandsons of Badruddin Tayabji, Saif Tayabji, who contributed to the development of Anjuman-i-Islam. He became member of committee of Anjuman-i-Islam in 1935 and became secretary in 1936 (Qureshi, A., 1958). Saif Tayabji was a Mathematician and a Judge. He was also a Member of Parliament. He strongly felt that lack of English education had hurt Muslims badly. He suggested that Muslims should ask for technical and commercial education rather then study humanities. He felt that by studying humanities Muslims would only join the ranks of educated unemployed (Guha, R., 2007). He was also the moving spirit behind the establishment of Urdu Research Institute in 1946 (Qureshi, A., 1958).

Today Anjuman runs educational institutions all over Maharashtra and has presence at places such as Mumbai, Navi Mumbai, New Panvel, Matheran, Pune, Panchgani, Solapur and Raigad (aiarkp, 2020).

The latest expansion of Anjuman-i-Islam has come up in Panvel, Mumbai. A new technical campus has come up  over 10.50 acres with more than 2.36 lakh square feet of built up area. The cost of the technical campus at 75 crore Indian rupees was donated by Abdul Razzak Kalsekar (Ummid, 2015, Anjuman-i-Islam Kalsekar, 2020).

Anjuman has been lucky to have dedicated staff. However, the enrolment in Urdu medium schools is dropping by the day. There are cases where individual teachers have gone beyond the call of duty to work for increasing the enrolment in Urdu medium schools to stop the closure of the school (Shaikh,A.,2019). However, there seems to be realisation among middle class Muslims families that Urdu may be important for cultural reasons but not for market and jobs as it is not embedded with the economic opportunities. In many cases, even those involved in the management of Urdu medium schools send their wards to English medium schools (Shaban, A., 2014). This is not confined to Mumbai or Maharashtra but happening all over the country (Shah, R., 2019). There have been instances where the enrolment in Urdu medium schools has increased as the Bombay Municipal Corporation has taken a number of steps (Sigh, D., 2018). However, the long term trend does not look positive for Urdu medium schools. Already a number of Urdu of medium schools in Maharashtra are semi Urdu. Semi Urdu schools teach Mathematics and Sciences in English while other subjects are taught in Urdu It is about time that the management at Anjuman-i-Islam think long and hard about the fate of Urdu schools. Strategy should be made to convert Urdu medium schools run by the Anjuman-i-Islam to English medium before the market forces compel it to take the decision in a hurry. However, it should be ensured that there is proper and adequate provision for the teaching of Urdu as a language.

For references and further reading, please see:

Anjuman I Islam. Available at: http://.anjumanislam.org/about/us. Accessed on 24 October 2020.

Anjuman-i-Islam (2013) Anjuman-i-Islam Mumbai – Reaching out, Touching Lives. Corporate Brochure, Mumbai.

Anjuman-i-Islam Kalsekar (2020) Available at: http://aiarkp.org/about-us/anjuman-i-islam. Accessed on 26 October 2020.

Dalvi, A. S. (2011) Bambai ke qadeem kutub khaney aur karimi library. Vol. /60, No. 3—4, pp. 4-15

Guha, Ramachandra (2007) India after Gandhi, pp. 370-71. London: Pan Macmillan Limited.

Nadvi, Hamidullah (1959) Karimi Library. Nawa e Adab. January, Vol. 1, No.1, pp. 73-79

NRInews24x7 (2015, October 10) India’s largest Muslim educational organization, Anjuman-I-Islam Mumbai. Available at: ttps://nrinews24x7.com/indias-largest-muslim-educational-organization-anjuman-i-islam-mumbai/. Accessed on 24 October 2020.

Qureshi, Abdulrazzaq (1958) Saifuddin Tayabji Marhoom. January. Vol. 9, No. 1 , pp. 4-4 (dal).

Ranganathan, Murali (2019) Mohammad Ali Roghay – Life and times of a Bombay Country Trader, In Kidambi, Prashant et. al. (2019) Bombay before Mumbai. Penguin Random House India

Shaban, Abdus (2014) Urdu medium schools in Maharashtra – An Assessment of their Infrastructure and Possibility of Developing them in Model Schools. Tata Institute of Social Sciences. Available at: https://mdd.maharashtra.gov.in/Site/Upload/Pdf/Combined_Urdu_medium_Schools_report.pdf. Accessed on 30 October 2020

Shah, Rajiv (2019) Muslim elite ‘promote’ English, regional languages: Just 0.8% enroll in Urdu schools. Counterview, 15 October. Available at: https://www.counterview.net/2019/10/muslim-elite-promote-english-regional.html. Accessed on 30 October 2020.

Shaikh, Aftab (2019) Hero teacher Shaheen Shah saves Anjuman-i-Islam’s Primary Urdu School in Nagpada from closure by raising its strength from 50 to 200, Mumbai Mirror India Times, June 27. Available at: https://mumbaimirror.indiatimes.com/mumbai/civic/hero-teacher-strives-and-spends-to-keep-school-afloat/articleshow/69966626.cms#:~:text=Senior%2Dmost%20teacher%20Shaheen%20Shah,has%20enrolled%2060%20new%20students.&text=The%20lure%3A%20the%20brand%2C%20school,draw%20even%20a%20single%20admission. Accessed on 30 October 2020.

Singh, Dipti (2018) Enrolment in BMC-run Urdu, Hindi medium schools goes up. Indian Express, 31 July. Available at: https://indianexpress.com/article/cities/mumbai/enrolment-in-bmc-run-urdu-hindi-medium-schools-goes-up-5283919/. Accessed on 30 October 2020.

Ummid (2015) Philanthropist Abdul Razzak Kalsekar dies at 84. August 11. Available at: https://www.ummid.com/news/2015/August/11.08.2015/abdur-razak-kalsekar-dead.html. Accessed on 29 October 2020

Wajihuddin, Mohammad (2019) Anjuman has shaped minds for 145 years, to recall glorious past on founders day. The Times of India, February 17. Available at: https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/mumbai/anjuman-has-shaped-minds-for-145-yrs-to-recall-glorious-past-on-founders-day/articleshow/68029013.cms. Accessed on 18 October 2020

Appendix:

(List of Educational Institutions run by Anjuman-i-Islam)

List of Pre Primary Schools

– Anjuman Islam’s Allana English Pre-Primary School, C.S.T.

– Anjuman Islam’s Akbar Peerbhoy English Nursery, C.S.T.

– Anjuman Islam’s Ahmed Sailor Pre-Primary School, Nagpada, Mumbai

– Anjuman Islam’s Abdus Sattar Shuaib Pre-Primary School, Maulana Shaukat Ali Road, Mumbai

– Anjuman Islam’s Begum Sharifa Kalsekar Girls’ English Pre- Primary School, Belasis Road, Mumbai

– Anjuman Islam’s Saif Tyabji Girls’ Pre- Primary School., Belasis Road, Mumbai

– Anjuman Islam’s Khalifa Ziauddin Girls’ Pre-Primary School , Mahim.

– Anjuman Islam’s Allana Urdu Pre-Primary School, Kurla

– Anjuman Islam’s Allana English Pre-Primary School, Kurla

– Anjuman Islam’s Fazilabai Abdul Sattar Oomer Pre-Primary School

Anjuman Islam’s Pre- Primary School, English Medium, Versova

– Anjuman – I – Islam’s Zubeida Talib Urdu Pre-Primary School


– Anjuman Islam’s Abdul Azim Khatkhatay English Pre-Primary School, Vashi, Mumbai

– Anjuman Islam’s Ahmed Peermohammed English Medium Pre-Primary School, Pune

– Anjuman Islam’s Noor Nursery Urdu School, Pune

List of primary schools

– Anjuman-I-Islam’s Ahmed Sailor Primary School, Nagpada

– Anjuman-I-Islam Abdus Sattar Shuaib Primary School, Maulana Shaukat Ali Road, Mumbai

– Anjuman-I-Islam’s Saif Tyabji Girls’ Primary & Pre-Primary School

– Anjuman-I-Islam’s Khalifa Ziauddin Girls’ Primary School – Mahim

– Anjuman-I-Islam’s Urdu Primary School, Kurla

– Anjuman-I-Islam’s Fazilabai Abdus Sattar Oomer primary School Urdu Medium, Andheri (W), Mumbai

– Anjuman – I – Islam’s Zubeida Talib Urdu Primary School, Navi Mumbai
– Anjuman-I-Islam Vm & Dm Pm Urdu Primary School, Pune

– Anjuman-I-Islam’s Allana English Primary School

– Anjuman-I-Islam’s Begum Sharifa Kalsekar Girls’ Primary English School

– Anjuman-I-Islam’s Allana English Primary School, Kurla

– Anjuman-I-Islam’s Primary School, English Medium

– Anjuman-I-Islam’s Abdul Azim Khatkhatay English Primary School

– Anjuman-I-Islam’s Ahmed Peermohammed English Medium Primary School

– Anjuman-I-Islam Public School, Panchgani

List of secondary schools

– Anjuman –I- Islam’s Badruddin Tayabji Urdu High School, CST

– Anjuman –I- Islam’s Ahmad Sailor High School

Anjuman –I- Islam’s Jan Mohd. Cassum High School of Commerce Maulana Shaukat Ali Road, Mumbai

– Anjuman-I-Islam J.M.C Night High School, Maulana Shaukat Ali Rd, Two Tanks, Mumbai

– Anjuman-Islam’s Abdus Sattar Shuaib School, Maulana Shaukat Ali Rd., Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam’s M.H.Saboo Siddik Tech.High School And Jr. College, Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam’s Saif Tyabji Girls’ High School, J.B.B.Marg, Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam’s Dr.M.I.Jamkhanawala Girls’ High School, Bandra West,Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam’s Kurla Boys High School, Kurla West, Mumbai
Mumbai

– Anjuman-I –Islam’s Allana Girls’ High School, C.S.T. Rd, Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam’s Begum Jamila Haji Abdul Haq High School For Girl’s, Versova, Mumbai

Anjuman – I – Islam’s Mustafa Faikh Urdu High School, Vashi, Navi Mumbai.

Anjuman -I- Islam, Peermohamed High School , Pune

Anjuman-I-Islam Public School, Panchgani

Anjuman-I-Islam Allana English High School, Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam Begum Sharifa Kalsekar English High School, Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam Allana English High School Kurla, Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam High School (English Medium), Versova, Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam Abdul Azim Khatkhatay English Secondary School

Anjuman-I-Islam Ahmed Peermohammed English Medium High School

List of Junior Colleges

Anjuman-I-Islam’s Akbar Peerbhoy College Of Commerce & Economics. Maulana Shaukat Ali Road, Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam’s M.H.Saboo Siddik Tech.High School And Jr.College, Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam’s Saif Tyabji Girls’ High School & Junior College of Arts & Science, J.B.B. Marg, Mumbai

Anjuman –I-Islam’s M.H.Jr. College Of Education For Women. Lady Jamshedji Road, Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam’s Dr.M.I Jamkhanawala Girls’ Jr.CollegeOf Sc. & Com.,Bandra West,Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam Junior College of Science & Commerce, CST, Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam Begum Jamila Haji Abdul Haq College of Home Science (Jr. College), Versova, Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam Allana Jr. College of Commerce, Science & Arts, Kurla, Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam Mustafa Fakih Jr. College of Commerce & Science, Vashi, Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam Peermohamed Jr. College of Arts and Commerce, Pune

List of Degree Colleges

Anjuman-i-Islam’s Akbar Peerbhoy College of Commerce and Economics, Maulana Shaukat Ali Road, Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam’s Dr. M.Ishaq Jamkhanawala Tibbia Unani Medical College & Haji A.R. Kalsekar Tibbia Hospital

Anjuman-i-Islam’s Complex, Andheri [W], Mumbai

Anjuman-i-Islam’s College of Hotel & Tourism Mgt. Studies & Research, CST, Mumbai

Anjuman-i-Islam’s Allana Institute of Mgt. Studies & A.K. Hafizka Institute of Hotel Mgt. & Catering Technology, CST, Mumbai

Anjuman-i-Islam’s M. H. Saboo Siddik College of Engineering, Byculla, Mumbai

Anjuman-i-Islam’s Akbar Peerbhoy College of Education, (B.Ed.), Vashi, Mumbai

Anjuman-i-Islam’s Allana Institute of Management Studies, CST, Mumbai

Anjuman-i-Islam’s Begum Jamila Haji Abdul Haq College of Home Science, CST, Mumbai

Anjuman-i-Islam’s Kalsekar Technical Campus – School of Architecture, New Panvel

Anjuman-i-Islam’s Technical Campus – School of Engineering & Technology, New Panvel

Anjuman-i-Islam’s Kalsekar Technical Campus – School of Pharmacy, New Panvel

Anjuman-i-Islam’s College of Hospitality Mgt. Studies (Affiliated to Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University Nasik) -YCMOU, CST, Mumbai

Anjuman-i-Islam’s M.H.Saboo Siddik Polytecnic, Byculla, Mumbai

Anjuman-i-Islam’s Akbar Peerbhoy Girls Polytechnic, CST, Mumbai

Anjuman-i-Islam’s Polytechnic for Girls ,Pune

Anjuman-i-Islam’s Abdul Razzak Kalsekar Polytechnic, New Panvel

Other Institutes

Anjuman-i-Islam’s M. H. Saboo Siddik Industrial Training Institute, Byculla, Mumbai

Anjuman-i-Islam’s M.H.S.S. Polytechnic Extension Centre, Solapur

Anjuman-i-Islam’s Homai Peerbhoy Computer Centre, CST, Mumbai

Anjuman-i-Islam’s Computer Training Center, C.S.T., Mumbai

Anjuman-i-Islam’s M.H.S.S. Computer Center for Hardware & Networking, Byculla, Mumbai

Anjuman-i-Islam’s A.E. Kalsekar Hospital, Andheri, Mumbai

Anjuman-i-Islam’s Urdu Research Institute, CST, Mumbai

Anjuman-i-Islam’s Adabi Printing Press, Byculla, Mumbai

Anjuman-i-Islam’s Karimi Library, CST, Mumbai

List of Hostels

Anjuman-I-Islam Sobani Hostel, CST, Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam Akbar Peerbhoy Girls Hostel, Andheri, Mumbai

List of Orphanages

Anjuman-I-Islam A.D. Bawla Female Orphanage, Versova, Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam Vali Mohd. & Dost Mohd. Peer Mohd. Girls Orphanage, Pune

Anjuman-I-Islam Boys Orphanage, Mumbra, Mumbai

List of Shara Units

Anjuman-I-Islam Sahara Mahim Unit (Center for Distress Women & Families), Mahim, Mumbai

Anjuman-I-Islam Sahara Mumbra Unit (Center for Distress Women & Families), Mumbra, Mumbai

100 Years of Aligarh Muslim University: The Journey Continues

Author: Mohsin Aziz

This month Aligarh Muslim University celebrated its Centenary. Series of events are planned at the University for this joyous occasion. The Story of Aligarh Muslim University started after the first war of independence in 1857. At that time, Sir Syed was posted at Bijnour as Sadr Amin. He saw the destruction brought upon Indians and particularly Muslims after the Colonial Power suppressed the independence movement. Sir Syed was deeply affected by what he saw. He was so distraught that he even planned to migrate to some other country. Sir Syed decided to stay and work for the upliftment for the community as he himself said that it would be an act of cowardice to leave the community in such dire straits at such crucial stage of their history and settle abroad.

To achieve his aim of uplifting the community from the quagmire of poverty and illiteracy that it found itself, Sir Syed worked simultaneously at several fronts. While on the one hand he was trying to inculcate scientific temperament among the Indian Muslims by establishing Scientific Society in 1864 and bringing out magazine like Tehzeeb-ul- Akhlaq (Mohammedan Social Reformer) in 1871. On the other he was urging them to adopt modern education. Naturally he faced multi faceted opposition also.

It was on 1 April 1869 he embarked on a journey of England where his son, Syed Mehmood, got scholarship for higher education. Sir Syed’s stay in England lasted for 17 months. The visit brought major change in Sir Syed’s outlook. Although the underlying factor for his England visit was to collect material to write rebuttal of Sir William Muir’s book on Prophet Mohammad (Peace be upon him). During his stay in England Sir Syed visited colleges and universities and was inspired to started a “Muslim Cambridge” back home. Back in India, Sir Syed hit the ground running and immediately started working on his plan.

After seeing the advancement in Science and Technology, Sir Syed realised that the only way forward for the community was to embrace the new Science. However, back in India he faced stiff resistance from the community as the community felt that educating their children in English would make them Christaan (Christian). Despite all the adversities Sir Syed showed his character and stood his ground and worked till his death to achieve his purpose. He was lucky in a sense that he got the support of many intellectuals of his times. Similarly many in the landed aristocracy wholeheartedly supported him. Among the intellectual giants who supported Sir Syed in his endeavour are Maulana Altaf Hussain Hali, Allama Shibli Nomani, Nawab Muhsinul Mulk etc. Personally Sir Syed did everything to raise funds for his College. He begged, danced on stage, played lottery, sang on stage and what not. In his last message Sir Syed said that “

To achieve his goal of uplifting the Muslim community, he started Madrasatul Uloom Musalmanan-e-Hind at Aligarh. The Madrasa opened its doors to students on 24 May 1875 to coincide with the 56th birthday of Queen Victoria. Two years down the line it became Mohammadan Anglo Oriental College at Aligarh on 8 January 1887. The inaugural function of the establishment of the College was presided by the the then Viceroy and Governor General of India, Lord Lytton, in the presence of Sir Syed and other dignitaries. Lord Lytton laid the foundation stone of the college. The address presented by Sir Syed to the Lord Lytton said that “from the seed we sow today, there may spring a mighty tree, whose branches like those of banyan of the soil, shall in their turn strike firm roots into the earth, and themselves send forth new and vigorous sapling: that this college may expand in a University whose sons shall go forth throughout the length and breadth of the land to preach the gospel of free enquiry, of large hearted toleration and of pure morality

Later when Lord Ripon, the Viceroy, visited Aligarh in 1884, Sir Syed said: “Some day when our endowments are sufficient, we would request the Government to confer upon us the legal status of an independent University.” In July 1906, Badruddin Tyabji said in an address to the Aligarh College Association in England: “If, as I hope, Aligarh develops into a university it will become the centre of attraction of education for all Mohammedans, not only from the various Mohammedan schools and colleges of India, but also, it may be, from all other parts of the Mohammedan world“. The college later became University on 9 September 1920 through a bill passed in the Imperial Legislative Assembly.

Today Aligarh Muslim University is one of the Central University of the Republic of India and has been consistently ranked amongst the India’s best Universities. The University is spread over 467.6 hectares (1155 acres) in the city of Aligarh in Uttar Pradesh. Presently the University offers more than 300 courses in the traditional and modern branches of education. The University has about 28000 students, more than 1300 teaching staff and about 5600 non teaching staff on its rolls. The University boasts of 12 faculties comprising of 98 teaching departments. Besides there are 3 academies and 15 centers and institutions in the University. However, the heart and the soul of the University is its residential character. Most of the staff and students reside inside the campus. There are 19 halls of residence for students with 80 hostels. Besides the University runs one primary school and seven high schools including one for the visually challenged and two senior secondary schools, one each for boys and girls.

There are ample opportunities for sports and cultural activities on campus thus providing for all round development of students. The University maintains Willingdon Cricket Ground for Cricket, Meston Swimming pool for swimming, Gymkhana, Hockey field with asto turf besides several football grounds, skating rink, basketball, volleyball and Lawn Tennis facilities. The University also has a hiking and mountaineering club. However, the University Riding Club is its crowning glory. It is more than 100 years old riding club with excellent horses and coaching facilities. Riding Club has its own riding ground for practice. Yours truly is a former member of the riding club having earned my horsemanship certificate from Janab Hamid Ansari Sahib during his tenure as Vice Chancellor of the University. For Cultural activities there is General Education Centre which boasts of Kennedy Auditorium. The activities in General Education Centre are organised through Drama Club, Music Club (Hindustani and Western Music), Literary Club and Film Club.

The University also runs three off campus in the districts of Malappuram (Kerala), Murshidabad (Bengal) and Kishanganj (Bihar). These campuses offer MBA and integrated B.A.L.L.B. courses.

Its alumni are spread all over the length and breadth of the globe as envisaged by the sage himself. The alumni of the University have established schools, colleges and universities all over the globe and have advanced the cause of education. However, there is still lot to be done particularly in India. Various reports make it clear that Muslims in India lack behind other communities in education. The situation is even worst when it comes to higher education. It is time for Muslims of India to take initiative and invest all their time, energy and money in raising their educational standards. It is time for them to rededicate themselves to learning and contribute even more to the progress and prosperity of India and humanity at large.