06 May, 2021

In Old Delhi, Rabea brings down some walls.

In Old Delhi, Rabea brings down some walls.
The labyrinthine lanes of Ballimaran in Chandni Chowk transport you to a B&W film of the ’50s. Something about the place in the Walled City makes you wonder whether anything here has changed. But, of course, it has. The crowds, the billboards, the food joints, a lot has changed. But the old world charm is inescapable.

The rickshaw-wallah asks you if you are visiting ‘Ghalib ki haveli’ when you mention Qasim Jan Gali. There, in an inconspicuous corner is Rabea Girls Public School, which has over the years become a symbol of progress and change in the area.

Set up in 1973 by Janab Hakeem Abdul Hameed in the heart of erstwhile Shahjahanabad, Old Delhi, the school’s main objective is to educate Muslim girls, assimilating them into mainstream society while also conforming to the religious and cultural milieu from where they come. All children learn Urdu till Class X here. Islamiyat is part of the system.

Paramjeet Singh, the officiating head who has been on the faculty for 25 years now, says contrary to popular opinion there was little resistance to the idea....

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