A little further from the Kamrangirchar Iron Bridge, you can see the ‘Madrasa of the Third Sex’ called ‘Dawatul Koran’ established for the Hijras. For such a large population of the country deprived of basic rights, such educational centers are giving birth to literacy among the hijras.
Their education is being handcuffed in this institution. This madrasa is also bringing about a moral change in the Hijra community through the teachings of the Qur’an. In the six months since its inauguration, the Hijra Madrasa has become very popular across the country. The purpose of the organizers is to awaken religious feelings in the people deprived of their right to education by teaching them the Qur’an and to spread the light of education among them.
Hijras studying in madrasas said, I want to study, I want to be educated. Besides teaching Quran, I want to learn Bengali and English. “We feel much better,” they said. I was not sure when I would get the light of education. But we got it for the welfare of this madrasa. In the past, we used to speak harshly to people on the streets and in awkward language. I don’t do that anymore. People used to move away when they saw us, now it is not like before. When we go to people now, they greet us, they also greet us.
It is learned that on November 7, 2020, under the initiative of the late Ahmed Ferdous Bari Chowdhury Foundation, under the supervision of Mufti Abdur Rahman Azad, the activities of ‘Dawatul Quran Third Gender Madrasa’ were started to impart religious education to the hijra community. At present, 20 to 30 hijras regularly study at this institution in Kamrangirchar. Besides, the foundation is operating in 14 branches of the country including Jatrabari, Jurain, Motijheel, Paltan, Mirpur, Manda, Keraniganj, Sylhet, Mymensingh, Khulna under the same name. There are about 200 hijra students under this madrasa all over the country. There are 15 teachers in each branch for them.
Maulana Mahmud Al Hassan, the assistant headmaster of the madrasa, said, “I have been teaching this third gender for six long months.” They are very sincere about their studies. Their passion for religious education is very noticeable. Hopefully, if they are given adequate facilities in the field of education, they will go a long way. He added that teaching is done every day from 10 am to 11 am. Hijras come and study with their team leader. They do not come here to study without the team leader or their permission.
According to locals, madrasas are definitely a good initiative for hijras. Hijras have been studying in this madrasa for a long time, but many still do not know the subject. We want people to know more about this madrasa.
Mufti Abdur Rahman Al Azad, the founding director of Dawatul Quran Third Gender Madrasa, said, “Our main goal is to give them religious knowledge.” As such, we are imparting education to them through teaching the Qur’an. Our journey was a little difficult. The hijras of our country run under their team leader. They call the team leader ‘Guru Ma’. They follow his instructions. We first talk to the team leader to bring them under our education, then come to study in groups if they agree. Again, many times the team leaders do not get a response. I am bringing them to our madrasa wherever I find them.