Reformist Darul Uloom VC sacked for praising Modi

Jul 24, 2011


Nine members of the committee voted in favour of 60-year-old Vastanvi's removal.

Maulana Ghulam Mohammad Vastanvi on Sunday became the first Vice-Chancellor of the Darul Uloom Deoband to be sacked by the governing body.

As announced after the February 23 emergency meeting of the governing body, Working Vice-Chancellor Maulana Abul Qasi Banarasi will be elevated to replace Vastanvi.

The Majlis-e-Shoora removed the Mohtamim, after he refused to resign claiming that the reports of the members of a three-member inquiry committee that also looked into his conduct were incomplete.

An agitated-looking Vastanvi himself announced the Shoora’s decision to the large press contingent camped outside the Guest House of the seminary: “I had said that I would resign if the report indicts me. However, the reports presented before the Shoora were incomplete – they only concentrated on what happened outside the Darul Uloom, not on the agitation by students.” He went on to say that some forces had influenced the students, and that Deoband does not belong to any one individual.

“I have not resigned. The Shoora has decided to remove me,” he said. Even as Vastanvi described the decision of the Shoora, students atop the walls of the Darul Uloom began cheering loudly. The anti-Vastanvi slogans soon spread deep into the campus.

Vastanvi said that “5-6” members of the Shoora had implicitly offered him their support, but eight of the 13 present were against him. In the end, Vastanvi could find only four Aye’s.

“I will not be going to court. I do not want to trouble the Darul Uloom. I will continue to be a member of the Shoora,” said Vastanvi. However, he seemed intent on going out with his head held high: “For the seven months that I have been here, I have not been allowed to work. I am not from here, and I have to look after my 200 madrasas and hundreds of other institutions,” he said.