THIS refers to Dr Hoodbhoy’s article ‘Math in our madressahs?’ It is tempting to think that the teaching of science, mathematics and English in madressahs would substantially reduce terrorism in the country.

The author has, however, ignored the fact that some terrorists (like the ones responsible for Sabin Mahmud’s murder and the Safoora massacre) had a good education, and one of them is even a business graduate from a prestigious institution.

And what about those Pakistani origin men who carried out train and bus bombings in the UK? In fact, the UK was terrorised for many years by Irish terrorists, most of whom were products of the British education system which prioritises the teaching of mathematics, science and English.

It should be obvious that even quality education cannot prevent a person from being brainwashed and turning to terrorism. There must be other factors involved.

Shakir Lakhani



THIS refers to Pervez Hoodbhoy’s article ‘Math in our madressahs?’ (July 18). I respect the writer’s scientific and rational thinking and endorse his opinion that the state should bring madressahs and mosques administrations under its control.

However, it is important that the proverbial baby should not be thrown with the bathwater and instead of discarding wholesale the madressah system it should gradually accept mathematics and science into the religious disciplines.

Jalaluddin S. Hussain


Published in Dawn, July 27th, 2015

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