New Delhi: After Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke at the Aligharh Muslim University's (AMU) centenary celebrations, the All India Majlis-e-Ittihadul Muslimeen chief and the Member of Parliament, Asaduddin Owaisi has flayed the address that it evaded crucial issues related to the institution.
In a tweet conveying wishes to the faculty, students and alumni of the premier institution, the Hyderabad MP said that the Prime Minister failed in acknowledging AMU as a minority institution.
My best wishes to #AligarhMuslimUniversity faculty, students & alumni on occasion of the historic University's centenary celebrations. @PMOIndia's address today failed in acknowledging AMU as a minority institution, which it is under Article 30 of our Constitution — Asaduddin Owaisi (@asadowaisi) December 22, 2020
The minority status of the institution has been challenged and a case filed in this regard is awaiting the Supreme Court's judgment. The AMU was declared a minority institution by the parliament in 1981. However this act was declared unconstitutional by an order of the Allahabad High Court on January 5, 2006. This order was challenged before the apex court and the matter is pending.
"There's no doubt that AMU has produced exceptional scholars and contributed immensely to India. PMO India lost an opportunity to acknowledge these contributions by allocating funds for the University's continuous growth," Owaisi wrote.
It is worth noting that the university's alumni boasts its unassailable record of producing eight heads of states five of whom ruled Pakistan, one each did Bangladesh, Maldives and India, and more than 50 chief ministers, governors, chief justices and central ministers over the past century.
Owaisi also said that AMU should have a Vice Chancellor who is competent enough to match the high standards of AMU.
The MP also referred to the continuing harassment by UP Police against students of the university following the anti-CAA protests last year.
"You can't heap praises on a University while its brightest stars face false criminal cases," he said.
...who is competent enough to match high standards of AMU. It's very worrying that many innocent #AMU students have been booked under false criminal cases. They should be withdrawn. You can't heap praises on a University while its brightest stars face false criminal cases 
— Asaduddin Owaisi (@asadowaisi) December 22, 2020
Concluding his remarks, the MP pointed out how the PM failed to resolve the long pending delays in setting up AMU Centre in Kishanganj, Bihar.
In 2013, the UPA government had approved a study centre of AMU in Kishanganj, which has an illiteracy rate of 57.04% which is far below the national average of 77.7%, as a result of years of protests.
However, the AMU centre is struggling for its existence as it is still functioning from a temporary building and faces fund crunch as well as legal tussles over 2224.02 acres of land given to it by the Bihar government.
Though the UPA government had approved Rs 136 crore and released Rs 10 crore, the centre has not been provided any grant since then.
The Aligarh Muslim University completed 100 years as a university on September 14.
On Tuesday, speaking at an event held as part of the centennial celebrations, Modi heaped praises on the university and its students.
"We see a mini-India among different departments, dozens of hostels, thousands of teachers and professors. The diversity which we see here is not only the strength of this university but also of the entire nation. History of education attached to AMU buildings is India's valuable heritage," Modi said.