Special Reports

International Intrafaith Conf at AMU

Aligarh: The ISESCO, in collaboration with Aligarh Muslim University and futureislam.com, organised an international conference on “Reconfiguring Interfaith & Intrafaith Understanding” on 17 December here at AMU. Tan Sri Dr. Syed Hamid Albar, Special Envoy of the OIC and former foreign minister of Malaysia, delivered the keynote address. Prof Glen Martin, President of the US-based World Parliament, unveiled a world constitution for children of God. Swamy Agnivesh, leader of Araya Samaj, urged Muslims to take all believing nations on board. Maulana Asghar Imam Salafi, Secretary-General of Markazi Jamiat Ahle-Hadeeth called for unity of faith communities on the basis of kalimatin sawa.

The opening session was marked by ISESCO Director-General, Abdulaziz Altwaijri’s address which was read on his behalf by Mr. Ahmad Fawzan. In his address Dr Altwaijri pointed out that “the world is in dire need of strengthened dialogue at various levels, particularly among followers of religions, and more particularly among spiritual leaders and the intellectual and scholarly elite.”

In his Presidential Address, Prof Rashid Shaz, Director, Centre for Promotion of Educational and Cultural Advancement of Muslims of India (CPECAMI), AMU, said that this conference was a wakeup call for all those who care about the future of humanity. He said that today, in the Middle-East as also elsewhere, Islam is at war with itself. According to Prof Shaz: “the House of Islam is in shambles and our relations with other faith communities are at an all-time low. In the MENA region and elsewhere, a full-scale Muslim-on-Muslim war is raging.  The internecine conflict has already consumed more than 4 million lives. The situation is alarming. This is clearly an Islamic Meltdown. As upholders of the Last Revelation we were entrusted to invite other faith communities for a ‘common word’ (kalimatin sawaa). Today, unfortunately, we need a dialogue within the House of Islam to agree on a common word.”

The event brought a number of renowned ulema and scholars to the table. The evening session brought Shia, Sunni, Breilvi, Deobandi, Ahle Hadeeth and sufis together for an honest and frank discussion. The conclave ended with the promise that this initiative will be widened to include more groups and it will be held frequently.

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 1-15 January 2016 on page no. 13

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