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Division Details - Lords House of Lords

15:46, 13 March 2017, Division 1: Higher Education and Research Bill

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Report (3rd Day)

Pre Vote

My Lords, I thank all noble Lords who have spoken in this brief debate. I am astonished by some of the Government’s response. The Minister said that this scheme will be open for applications before the end of the Parliament, but this Parliament ends in 2020. On the whole, the Government’s response takes insufficient account of the worries caused in the Muslim community by the uncertainty about the date of availability and of the perfectly understandable desire of the Muslim community to know what progress is being made. It gives no substantive explanation for the very long delay to date or the inability to get this work done in a reasonable time. The Government have offered no rebuttal of the Islamic finance experts’ view that with political will and proper resource we could have sharia-compliant student finance available for students going up to university in April 2018.

This is all extremely disappointing. We should do better. My amendment will at least let the Muslim community know what progress is being made and when to expect a solution to a problem that continues to disadvantage them and their children. I wish to test the opinion of the House.

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