Mohammad Ali Jauhar University, which is built on public land, with Azam Khan as its lifelong chancellor, is all set to be taken over by Yogi Adityanath government in UP. The university is the dream project of Azam Khan, the most popular Muslim face of Samajwadi Party and a controversial divisive leader, who is in jail in fake birth certificate case.
Azam Khan proposed for a state-owned Urdu university in Rampur in 2004, after the Mulayam Singh Yadav led Samajhwadi Party came to power. The university was proposed to be named after Mohammad Ali Jauhar, a Muslim leader who is known for leading Khilafat movement.
However, given Azam Khan’s condition that he should be made lifelong chancellor of the university, the then governor of Uttar Pardesh, T V Rajeshwar, did approved the bill. The UPA-ruled central government also opposed the idea of Azam Khan being lifelong chancellor of a state owned university; however, Khan did not give up.
The Samajwadi Party lost power in the state to Mayawati led BSP in 2007. The new government was not favorable to Azam Khan, who wanted a private control over the university, but was using public land to build it.
Azam Khan dropped the idea of university after Mayawati government came to power and instead built an engineering college named Jauhar College of Engineering and Technology. For the next few years, the engineering college was being run from the varsity campus and the idea of public university went into limbo.
But, in 2012, Samajwadi Party was elected back to power with huge majority and the now Azam Khan, who saw himself as number two in the government after Akhilesh Yadav, dropped the idea of state owned varsity and built a fully-fledged private university on a public land.
The varsity was inaugurated by Mulayam Singh Yadav, the patriarch of Samajwadi Party, in 2012, just a few months after the party came to power. In the inauguration function, the then CM and Mulayam Singh Yadav heaped praise for Azam Khan, and hailed him as sort of new messiah of Muslim community.
Azam Khan was urban development and minority affairs minister in the Akhilesh Yadav government, and the university flourished for the next five years under his leadership. Several land grab case by the private as well as public authorities were filed against the institute’s management during the Mayawati government and Akhilesh Yadav government, but no action were taken.
The university faculties are all named after Islamists and secular icons with Paramedical Sciences department named Mother Teresa Institute of Paramedical Science, humanities department named Mulayam Singh Faculty of Humanities and so on.
The university was awarded minority institution status in 2013 by National Commission for Minority Educational Institutions (NCMEI), whose judgment reads, “We find and hold that the Mohammad Ali Jauhar University, Rampur is a minority educational Institution within the meaning of Section 2(g) of the National Commission for Minority Educational Institutions Act.”
Azam Khan very easily converted a university built on public land into a private fiefdom and got minority institution status for the varsity, and therefore, reserved 50 percent seats for the students of Muslim community.
The university was in headlines throughout the tenure of Akhilesh Yadav, as crores of rupees were spent on advertising. For 5 years, university was case study of blatant abuse of power, graft, abuse of rule of law, and power of Azam Khan.
Since the Yogi government came to power in 2017, the record is being set straight by the administration, as a few weeks ago Yogi Adityanath administration ran JCB on the building built on the public land, to construct a road. And now the Yogi government is all set to take over the university and Azam Khan, who is in jail in fake birth certificate case, could not do anything. Karma has completed full circle in Azam Khan’s case.