After the Allahabad University decided to introduce courses in Hindu astrology and rituals, now the Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) will include ‘Sanatan Dharma’, along with other religions, in its curriculum from the next academic session.
The AMU is going to start a post-graduate course in comparative religion also.
The university, so far, had been offering courses only in Islamic studies.
AMU spokesperson M. Shafey Kidwai said on Thursday: “Chairperson of the Islamic Studies department has moved a proposal to start a course on comparative studies will be offered from the next session. Religious texts of Sanatan Dharma and other faiths will be taught along with Islamic studies.”
Chairman, department of Islamic Studies, Mohammad Ismail, said: “Like Islamic studies, we aspire to offer quality education concerning Sanatan Dharma and other religions. In the new course, there will be lessons on the Vedas, Puranas, Upanishads, Ramayana, Gita and other scriptures related to Sanatan Dharma. Teachings of Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism and other religions will also be there in the curriculum.”
He said that the department has been functioning since 1948 and over 1,000 students are enrolled in undergraduate, post-graduate and Ph.D programmes.
At least 10 students from Iran, Thailand, Bangladesh and other Central Asian countries are pursuing research there. The department has a library with over 70,000 books.
This comes even as the Department of Islamic Studies has decided to remove books by two authors from the syllabus.
These authors are Maulana Abul Ala Maududi of Pakistan and Syed Qutb of Egypt.
The decision came after more than 20 educationists wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi demanding that these books be banned as the content of these books supported the Islamic State.
“The board of studies will formally endorse the decision in its meeting to be held within a fortnight. There have been objections against the inclusion of books by these authors. Therefore, we have decided to remove them from the course curriculum to avoid unnecessary controversy,” said Professor Ismail.