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Blessed by Bapu and inspired by Patel's ideals, Jamia Millia Islamia turns 95

Speed News Desk | Updated on: 29 October 2015, 21:24 IST

One of the most renowned central universities in India, Jamia Millia Islamia is celebrating its founder's day today. Significantly, it is one of the few educational institutions which came into being in response to the nationalist call of freedom struggle to boycott educational institutions supported or run by the British colonial rule.

This institution, which garnered immense support from the freedom activists as it battled initial challenges of establishment, stands proudly today as an epitome of communal harmony.

01
Established in 1920
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Faculty members of Jamia during the founders day celebration in 1957. (Photo: Wiki Commons)

Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) was established in a response to Gandhiji's call to boycott all educational institutions supported or run by the colonial regime. Since the founders of JMI did not approve of Aligarh Muslim University's colonial inclinations, they parted their ways and laid foundation for a different educational institution in 1920 in Aligarh.
02
Did you know Allama Iqbal of 'Sare Jahan se Achcha' fame was offered Jamia's vice chancellorship
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File Photo: Maulana Mohammad Ali Jauhar and Hakim Ajmal Khan

Hakim Ajmal Khan, one of the founders, was elected the first chancellor of Jamia on 22 November 1920. Mohamed Ali Jauhar became Jamia's first Vice Chancellor, as Allama Iqbal could not accept the offer made through Gandhiji.

03
Jamia supported Sardar Vallabhai Patel (now hijacked by the right wing)
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Photo: Gandhiji and Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel during the Bardoli satyagraha. (Photo: Wiki Commons)

The institution actively participated in the Bardoli satyagraha, which was led by Sardar Vallabhai Patel and sent volunteers across the country to motivate people to fight for the freedom of the country. The colonial government soon imprisoned many of its teachers and students.
04
Gandhiji financially supported Jamia Millia Islamia

The institution suffered an acute financial crisis after the Khilafat Movement ended since JMI received funding from the same. At this time, Gandhiji came forward and as an encouragement said, "The Jamia has to run. If you are worried about its finances, I will go about with a begging bowl." One of Ganhiji's son also studied in the university.

05
An 'Islamic nationalist institution' supported by eminent freedom fighters
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Sarojini Naidu | Rabindranath Tagore | Jawaharlal Nehru.(Photo: Getty Images)

Rabindranath Tagore called JMI "one of the most progressive educational institutions of India." Citing the struggle through which the institution went, Sarojini Naidu said about it, "Jamia Millia Islamia was built stone by stone and sacrifice by sacrifice." However, Jawaharlal Nehru, said that Jamia is a "lusty child of the non-cooperation days."
06
Troubled times brought Jamia to Delhi
Due to financial crisis the institution was shifted from Aligarh to Karol Bagh, New Delhi in 1925.
07
When Dr Zakir Hussain took over the leadership
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Dr Zakir Hussain. (Photo: Wiki Commons)

In 1925, Dr Zakir Hussain left the University of Berlin to serve at JMI. One of the significant movements which he initiated was to start popular evening classes for adult education. This moved on to become an institution called Idara-i-Taleem-o-Taraqqi in 1938.

08
Coming together to ride over bad times

The Partition riots which shook the nation did effect Jamia but the campus remained relatively calm.Gandhi said that the campus remained "an oasis of peace in the Sahara" of communal violence. However, books worth Rs 7 lakh were burnt during the turmoil

09
First building in Okhla village
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An old image of Okhla village.(Photo: Wiki Commons)

The first building of the university in Okhla (where the university is currently based) was a school which was established on 1 March 1935.

10
"An oasis of calm as the country is partitioned"
The Partition riots which shook the nation did effect Jamia but the campus remained relatively calm.Gandhi said that the campus remained "an oasis of peace in the Sahara" of communal violence. However, books worth Rs 7 lakh were burnt during the turmoil.
11
A stamp for founders' day
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A stamp issued by Indian govt in 1970. (Photo: Wiki Commons)

The Government of India issued a stamp on 29 October 1970, in commemoration of university's golden jubilee.

12
Jamia becomes a central university

By a Special Act of the Parliament, Jamia Millia Islamia was made a central university of India in December 1988.

First published: 29 October 2015, 21:24 IST
 
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