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COMMUNITY NEWS: 1-51 May 2001

Begum Rehana Undre, chairperson of Mumbaiís Royal Educational Society and Dilip Kumar (Yusuf Khan) taking care of Gujarat earthquake children adopted by the society at Borli Panchtan.

Khan-e-Khananís tomb to be illuminated
N Delhi: The Delhi Tourism Development and Transport Corporation will soon illuminate the 17th century tomb of Abdur Rahim Khan situated at Mathura road near Nizamuddin at night.
The majestic tomb with its geometrical paths and symmetrical ground is heritage site under the purview of the Archeological Survey of India. The monument in red sand houses the tomb of Abdur Rahim who had the title of Khani-khanan (khan of the khans) and is well known as a poet. He was the son of Emperor Akbar' s loyal protector Bairam Khan.
It was the DTTDC head Dr Roshan Lal who last year revived the longstanding proposal to illuminate the tomb and make it one of the popular tourist spots in the city. It was only recently that finally the ASI and the central government tourism department gave it the final nod. While ASI director general Kamal Anand agreed to the proposal earlier it was the tourism department which provides the funding for the illumination project.
Work on the illumination project has begun. The ASI has built a boundary wall at the monument site. The tourism department had sanctioned the funds for the illumination of the Safdar Jung tomb to the DTTDC. But subsequently the Safdarjung tomb project was given to another agency and the DTTDC had sought permission from the department to use the funds to the Rahim Kahn-e-Khanan tomb. The project is expected to cost Rs one million.

Ministerís resignation not accepted
Patna: Bihar chief minister Rabri Devi refused to accept the resignation of the minister of state for welfare, Ejazul Haque, who had resigned from his post after the police action against the Siwan MP Shahabuddin.
The RJD chief, Laloo Prasad Yadav and other senior leaders tried to cajole the angry minister. Though the minister did not insist on remaining out of the government after the cajoling from the RJD supremo and non-acceptance of his resignation from the government, he has shown the vulnerability of the Rabri government in Bihar. He flayed the police action in Bihar in the House. He also expressed anger over the fact that a local criminal who had been arrested recently confessed that he was a regular visitor of Haque's house. The latter strongly refuted the police claim and charged that they want to tarnish his image as he is a relative of Shahabuddin.

Amir Khusru remembered
New Delhi: At a time when India and Pakistan continue to remain political enemies a three-day cultural festival focussing on the great poet Amir Khusru with participants from across the border may be welcomed as a breath of fresh air.
Titled Jahan-e-Khusru, the realm of the Heart was held in the city's ancient Arab Ki Sarai, next to Mughal emperor Humayun's tomb from 23-25 March. The festival brought artistes from Pakistan, Iran, Tunisia and India together in a musical treat that bridged boundaries on that night.
The love of great poet Khusru bound different communities in a brief foray into Mughal times and culture. Conceptualized by eminent filmmaker and artiste Muzaffar Ali, the festival ended with music and spirits rising to crescendo on 25 march. It was organized by Delhi Tourism and Sahitya Kala Parishad, the apex body for literature in the country.
The tale set to music was of love and submission, pain and yearning, loss and hope all translated from Persian by Ali. Pakistani singer Abida Parween held the audience captive with her music. Other prominent artistes who participated include Fahimuddin Dagar, Nusrat Hasan, Deepmala Mohan and Loutif Bouchnak.
Amir Khusru is credited with crafting the Indian music instruments Sitar and Tabla. The great poet was associated with the Mughal durbar and saw several king come and go.

Shia waqf board in disarray
Lucknow: UP Shia Waqf Board is mired in innumerable controversies since its inception. Even today a number of accusing fingers are being pointed towards it for its financial mess. The board despite having a large number of properties has failed to increase its sources of income. The chairman, Waqar Mahdi Zaidi, forced by the financial mess decided to act tough in order to bail out the Board.
He ordered to stop payment for the waqf inspectors responsible for collecting the commission and rents from tenants. But despite his orders salaries were paid to those people. The chairman has made it known that without taking stringent measures it is not possible to bail out the ailing board. He has issued a notice and made it known to board employees that without collecting full commission and rent from the tenants their salaries will not be paid.
Employees have reacted very strongly over his order and have said that when several members of the board themselves are not paying the board's commission how they can collect the commission from others. They have also said that if the chairman wants to increase the income of the board he will have to give strict orders to all regional offices of the commission and get complete details from them.

Human rights activist killed
Hyderabad: The Andhra Pradesh government has ordered a judicial inquiry into the brutal killing of senior civil liberties activist Azam Ali in Nalgonda town by unknown assailants on 18 February. The state home minister strongly condemned the incident and said that all efforts were being made to nab the culprits.
Azam Ali, general secretary of Nalgonda district unit of Andhra Pradesh Civil Liberties Committee (APCLC) was killed in Nalgonda town when he was making preparations for a protest meeting against the murder of state vice president of the APCLC, Purushottam in Hyderabad in November last year.
According to the police, two unknown persons attacked Azam Ali near Ambedkar Bhawan when he was making a phone call from a telephone booth. The eyewitnesses say that the two assailants came on a Hero Honda motorcycle and one of them barged into the booth and attacked Azam Ali. Ali tried to run away but the assailants chased him and killed him in broad day light.
The Assembly was rocked by the second brutal killing of a senior civil liberties activist in the state in the last two months.

Warrant against senior Bukhari
New Delhi: A court in Delhi has issued another non-bailable warrant against the former imam of the Jama Masjid Delhi, Maulana Abdullah Bukhari. The new warrant has been issued against the octogenarian Maulana for not being able to appear in the court on the due date.
Metropolitan magistrate MS Rohaila has ordered the Delhi police to present the Maulana till 7 July before the court. The SHO of the Jama Masjid police station said that he could not follow the warrant because the Maulana was admitted in Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital where he was to be operated.
The maulana is accused of having constructed a Wazookhana on the DDA land without any permit. Though the building was demolished on the government order but the case was not scrapped. He was issued non-bailable warrant on 20 January for not being able to appear before the court.
The Maulana is not well for quite a long time and subsequently he appointed his son Maulana Ahmad Bukhari as the imam of the Jama Masjid.

Let him utter nonsense: Ulama
Deoband: Ulama of Darul Uloom, Deoband have asked Muslims to ignore the statements of the RSS and its other outfits. They told this while discussing the new bombshell of RSS chief when he demanded the Muslims to Indianize their names.
The Maulanas say that now the common people including the Hindu brethren themselves have understood the heinous program of the RSS and now we don't need to make statements on this issue.

Muslims being lured for votes
Guwahati: with only a few weeks to go for the assembly polls in Assam, political parties are busy wooing minorities voters. Muslims are the most important target of all these parties including the BJP as they form more than thirty percent of the state population. They are perceived to be a deciding factor in the formation of the next government in the state.
While the Asom Gana Parishad is hoping to increase its share of minority votes, the Congress is in the process of forging an understanding with different Muslim groups in the state. Muslims will play a deciding factor in the formation of the state government as they are deciding factor in a number of constituencies of the state. They are a dominating force in more than 40 of the 126 assembly segments of Assam assembly. These seats are located in Dhubri, Nagaon, Goalpara, Cachar, Karimganj, Hailakandi, Bongaigaon and Mangoldoi constituencies.
In the last assembly elections 10 Muslim candidates won on the AGP tickets. This time, the figures might come down due to the AGP's stand on Illegal Migrants Determination by Tribunal Act. The party has been demanding scrapping the Act.
Most Muslims in Assam are of the view that the Act should continue and if it is scrapped, it might lead to Muslim citizens of Assam getting deported to Bangladesh. The Congress is supporting this view and this alone has helped the party considerably to be a strong contender in forthcoming elections.

Jamia staff creates corpus fund for students
New Delhi: In a bid to enable minority and needy students to pursue their studies without any hitch, the teachers of Jamia Millia Islamia have created a scholarship fund which is likely to become operational from the forthcoming academic session.
The unique fund, as it is the first time the teachers in the university have joined hands to provide financial assistance to the students, has already been approved in the Jamia's executive council meeting held last year. The fund is based on a contribution of Rs 20 each by around 400 teachers of the Jamia every month. The teachers are reported to have taken up the cause themselves without any assistance from the government or any of its agencies.
The university provides three kinds of scholarship to the students-merit scholarship, central scholarship and students aid fund. While the merit scholarships are granted purely on the basis of merit, the central scholarships are provided on merit-cum-need basis. The grants of student aid funds are however entirely need based.

Jamaat organizes two state convention
Araria: A three day-long conference of the Jamaat-e-Islami Hind Bihar and Jharkhand region was organized here from 23-25 March. The conference drew more than ten-thousand people from across the twin states of Jharkhand and Bihar. Jharkhand was recently carved out of Bihar.
Delegates from across the two states attended the conference. It also drew people from outside Bihar. A very important aspect of this conference was the presence of numerous senior leaders of other faiths and communities. Rev. Valson Thumpo, Swami Agnivesh and several other representatives from Buddhists, Sikhs and Jains besides senior central leaders of the Jamaat including its Ameer Maulana Sirajul Hasan.
During the whole three day conference this north Bihar city that lies on the Indo-Nepal border drew a number of locals in it. Jamaat has a very good cadre based presence in the area.

Husainiya is century-Old
Hapur: Madrasa Gulzar-e-Husainiya recently completed its hundred years of existence. Madrasa has decided to organize its centennial celebrations in a big way. The Madrasa organized a seminar on 6 April on this occasion. The seminar was attended by a number of Muslim leaders including Zafar Saifullah and Maulana Mujahidul Islam Qasimi besides Maulana Abdullah Abbas Nadwi.
Mujahidul Islam Qasimi while speaking on the occasion said that the need of the hour is to equip our children with technical education. He said that now the time has passed when merely formal education was thought to be a big thing. The Maulana added that without technical education we will be left behind in the race of development. Other speakers in the seminar included Zafar Saifullah, Prof. Akhtarul Wase, Dr Farooq, Maulana Sajjad Nomani and Kamal Farooqi.

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