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Minority character of AMU "matter of life and death" : VC Lt Gen Zameer Uddin Shah Said

Aligarh Muslim University vice chancellor Lt Gen Zameer Uddin Shah said on Monday that the minority character of the university was a "matter of life and death". He was reacting to the Centre's submission in the Supreme Court that the university was not a minority institution.
"The minority character of the university is a matter of life and death - it concerns the education and advancement of the socially, economically backward section of Indian society, Muslims. The government has retracted from its earlier stand. We will fight our cause in court," Shah told TOI.
Stressing on the importance of minority status for AMU, university spokesman Rahat Abrar said the institution had been established by the 1920 Act of Central Legislature, which provides for a "teaching" and "residential" Muslim University at Aligarh.


Abrar said the Union government in 1981 passed the AMU (Amendment) Act, saying that it was established by the Muslims of India. The Act also revived the University Court, giving it full powers.
The 1981 AMU Amendment Act Section 2 (l) has defined the university as "the educational institution of their choice established by the Minority of India, which originated as the MAO College, Aligarh and which was subsequently incorporated as the AMU".
Suspended secretary of the AMU teachers' association Mustafa Zaidi also expressed disappointment over the stance of the Centre in the Supreme Court. "The mildest term for this is 'unfortunate'", he said.
"Since 2006, when the UPA, in its second term, filed an appeal against the Allahabad High Court judgment, the law has not changed. How can the government now retract from that stand?" Zaidi asked.
In 2006, a division bench of the Allahabad High Court struck down the provision of the AMU Amendment Act, 1981 scrapping AMU's minority status. In doing so, the Allahabad High Court upheld its earlier judgment that considered the minority status accorded to the university as "unconstitutional". The Central government then stood for the AMU's demand for minority status.
Sources : TOI

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