Department of Arabic, University College, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India
Department of Arabic in University College is one of the oldest centres of teaching Arabic in Kerala. This department began functioning from 1942; and ever since that period the teaching of Arabic language and literature under part II for the B.A. & B.Sc. and also for intermediate courses has been continued with the number of students varying from three to fourteen. Apart from the richness of thought and clarity of expression which the study of Arabic would offer to the learners, it provided a familiar source of learning for pupils who were conventionally trained to read passages from the best book in Arabic. The establishment of this department in the university college has encouraged Muslim students to take to education at the university level. After the Intermediate classes were separated from the University college the study of Arabic is imparted separately for the courses in the Intermediate college. When the Arabic department was started, an Arabic lecturer’s post was created in the college and shri. K. Muhammad was appointed in that post in 1942. Shri. Muhammad continued as lecturer till 1957 when he was promoted to the post of the II Grade Professor. He retired during 1965 and so Shri. Moulavi P.M. Edassery, formerly of Maharaja’s College, Ernakulam was temporarily appointed as lecturer in Arabic against the II grade professor’s post. Prof. M.M. Khadir Unni, Lecturer in Arabic, Maharaja’s college, Ernakulam was promoted and posted in the college as professor of Arabic and took charge from P.M. Edassery and he continues as the head of the department of Arabic. This year there are 14 students taking Arabic under Part II (3 in II D.C., 6 in I D.C., 4 in II P.D.C. and 1 in P.D.C.)
The Arabic department has secured good percentages of pass ranging from sixty to hundred percent in the university examinations. Students of Arabic from time to time have won distinction also. The teaching of Islamic History and Culture under Part III for the B.A. degree examination in group II (c) was started from the year 1948. By the commencement of BA Degree Course in Arabic Language & Literature in 1968, this department became a full-fledged one. In 1971, it was elevated to the only P.G. Department of Arabic under University of Kerala. Further the department was approved as a Ph.D. research centre in 1984. In 1994, M. Phil course in Arabic was introduced as the only centre for M. Phil studies in Arabic at college level in the state. Every effort is being made to promote the knowledge of Arabic among the students to enable them to enjoy and appreciate chaste Arabic language and its literature. More than 20 national and international journals and periodicals are also made available for the use of students. The department has a well-developed library with 4500 books in both classical and modern Arabic. In addition to this library includes a number of books in Persian, Urdu and English. Recently the library has introduced a computerized index and access system which facilitates the easy and faster use of the library system. From 2010 admission onwards, the degree programme has been converted to First Degree Programme (FDP) in Arabic under choice based credit and semester system. The department of Arabic is recognized as the authorized centre for English-Arabic and Arabic-English translation of business, travel, civil and legal documents and deeds, by the Ministry of Home, Government of Kerala and the Office of the Protector of Emigrants.