About Jamia Millia Islamia University
Jamia Millia Islamia, an institution originally established at Aligarh in United Provinces, India in 1920 became a Central University by an act of the Indian Parliament in 1988. In Urdu language, Jamia means ‘University’, and Millia means ‘National’.
The story of its growth from a small institution in the pre-independence India to a central university located in New Delhi—offering integrated education from nursery to research in specialized areas—is a saga of dedication, conviction and vision of a people who worked against all odds and saw it growing step by step. They “built up the Jamia Millia stone by stone and sacrifice by sacrifice,” said Sarojini Naidu, the nightingale of India.
Under the colonial British rule, two dominant trends joined hands and contributed towards in the birth of Jamia. One was the anti-colonial Islamic activism and the other was the pro-independence aspiration of the politically radical section of western educated Indian Muslim intelligentsia. In the political climate of 1920, the two trends gravitated together with Mahatma Gandhi as a catalyst. The anti-colonial activism signified by the Khilafat and the pro-independence aspirations symbolised by the non-cooperation movement of the Indian National Congress helped to harness creative energies and the subsequent making of Jamia Millia Islamia. Rabindranath Tagore called it “one of the most progressive educational institutions of India”.
Responding to Gandhiji’s call to boycott all educational institutions supported or run by the colonial regime, a group of nationalist teachers and students quit Aligarh Muslim University, protesting against its pro-British inclinations. The prominent members of this movement were Maulana Mehmud Hasan, Maulana Mohamed Ali, Hakim Ajmal Khan, Dr. Mukhtar Ahmad Ansari, and Abdul Majid Khwaja.
The Foundation Committee met on 29 October 1920. It comprised of the following members:
- Dr. Mukhtar Ahmad Ansari (Delhi)
- Mufti Kafayattullah (Delhi)
- Maulana Abdul Bari Farang Mahali (UP)
- Maulana Sulaiman Nadvi (Bihar)
- Maulana Shabbir Ahmed Usmani (UP)
- Maulana Husain Ahmad Madni (UP)
- Chaudhury Khaleeq-uz-zaman (UP)
- Nawab Mohammad Ismail Khan
- Tasadduq Husain Khan (UP)
- Dr. Mohammad Iqbal (Punjab)
- Maulana Sanaullah Khan Amritsari (Punjab)
- Dr. Saifuddin Kitchlew (Punjab)
- Maulana Abul Kalam Azad (Bengal and Bihar)
- Dr. Syed Mehmood (Bengal and Bihar)
- Saith Abdullah Haroon Karachiwale (Sindh, Bombay and Hyderabad)
- Abbas Tyabiji (Sindh, Bombay and Hyderabad)
- Sait Miyan Mohammad Haji Jaam Chhotani (Sindh, Bombay and Hyderabad)
- Maulavi Abdul Haq (Sindh, Bombay and Hyderabad)
On 22 November 1920, Hakim Ajmal Khan was elected the first chancellor of Jamia. Mohamed Ali Jauhar became Jamia’s first Vice Chancellor, as Allama Iqbal could not accept the offer made through Gandhiji. It also elected a syndicate and created a syllabus subcommittee.
The known freedom fighter and Muslim theologian, Maulana Mehmud Hasan, laid the foundation stone of Jamia Millia Islamia at Aligarh on Friday, 29 October 1920. Considering the difficult circumstances under which it started, the list of its first teachers is very impressive:
For more Info: – History of Jamia Millia Islamia University