Issues

Mushawarat on national and international situation

New Delhi: The Central Committee (Markazi Majlis) of the All India Muslim Majlis-e Mushawarat, the umbrella body of Indian Muslim organisations, met here on Saturday, 6 August under the chairmanship of the national president Syed Shahabuddin and was attended by Dr. Zafarul Islam Khan (Working President), Mr. Abdul Khaliq,  Janab Mohammad Jafar (Vice President), Maulana Syed Jalaluddin Umari (Amir, Jamaat-e Islami Hind), Mr. Amanullah Khan, Prof. S.M. Yahya,  Mr Ejaz Ahmed Aslam, Mr. Ahmad Raza, Janab Nusrat Ali, Mrs. Nusrat Shervani, Mr. Ahmad Rashid Shervani (General Secretary) and Prof. Akhtarul Wasey.
The meeting offered condolences and prayers for community figures who have departed recently, especially  PROF. ISHTIAQ ABIDI, former Secretary, Delhi Urdu Academy, PROF. ABDUL QAWI DASNAVI, former Head of Urdu Deptt, Saifia College Bhopal, SAJID RASHID, editor of Quarterly Naya Waraq, DR. F.R. FARIDI, noted Islamic economist and Editor, Zindagi-e Nau, ALHAJ ABDUL HAKIM, founder of Alkabir Polytechnic, Jamshedpur, DR. K. ABDUL SATTAR, member, AIMMM and General Secretary Muslim Majlis Tamil Nadu, Prof. HAKIM QAYAMUDDIN, former principal of AMU’s Ajmal Khan Tibbia College, G.M. MIR Rajpuri, former speaker of J&K Assembly and former minister, Dr. RIZWAN AHMAD KHAN, famous Urdu journalist, former senior bureaucrat and educationist R.K. SAIYED, Maulana AHSAN MIFTAHI, noted journalist, Ustad ASAD ALI KHAN, classical musician and instrument player, DR. MUHAMMAD IBRAHIM KAZI, Founder-Principal of Poona College of Arts, Science & Commerce, FAKHRUDDIN KHOORAKIWALA, chancellor of Jamia Milli Islamia and chairman and founder of Akbar Ally’s business house, Mumbai, TARB ZIAYEE, an Urdu poet of national fame and SYED SHAH YAHYA NOORI, Sajjadanashin of Dargah Khanqah Barkaatiya Noori, Marhara Sharif.


The meeting, conducted by the Working President, deliberated on milli, national and international situation, especially the issue of Jamia Millia Islamia’s minority character, Police atrocities at Forebesganj, Muslim community response to RTE vis-à-vis madrasas and minority educational institutions. The Working President apprised the members about various activities since the last meeting of the central committee. The meeting considered and passed the following resolutions:

Mumbai bomb blasts
AIMMM condemns the bomb blasts in Mumbai on 13 July which have claimed the lives of 26 persons so far. Such criminal attacks run against the teachings and tenets of all religions. AIMMM welcomes the announcement of the Union and state home ministries that probes will not spare any outfit or group, though in reality the ATS and police forces have been seen active only in Muslim-concentration areas and even interrogating people already behind bars for years. A free and fair mind is required to unearth the conspirators who are after the peace and harmony in our country, especially the Hindutva outfits whose designs to subvert the constitutional system of the country are in the open after Aseemanand’s confessions.

Teaching of Gita in M.P. and Karnataka schools
The AIMMM is alarmed at the insistence of the BJP governments in M.P. and Karnataka to teach Gita in schools. M.P. schools are also teaching yoga and Surya namaskar while the Karnataka state education minister has said that those who do not want to study Gita should leave the country. AIMMM condemns this move and cautions that it will only fuel communalism in the country and will kill multi-culturalism.

Reservation for minorities
The Muslim community solidly and unitedly demands the implementation of the Mishra Commission recommendation for 15% reservation for minorities, including 10% for Muslims. AIMMM condemns the current attempts to dilute this recommendation and to somehow accommodate Muslims in the OBC quota, which is not practical and Muslims will not get more than 2.9 percent under it. As past experience shows, Muslims will not be able to benefit from a mixed quota sharing with others. Such an insignificant quota will only rob Muslims of their right and will lead to unnecessary friction between the Muslim community and OBCs. Hence, implementation of Mishra Commission recommendation is the only solution to this issue.

Waqf Cadre
In order to safeguard Waqf properties and ensure the smooth functioning of waqf boards, Sachar Committee recommended the creation of a Waqf administrative cadre within the Indian administrative service comprising of Muslim officers as the non-availability of Muslim officers hampers the functioning of state and central Waqf boards. But the Union Minority Ministry, whose job is to implement schemes started as a result of the Sachar findings, is not in the favour of such a cadre. The excuses put forward are meaningless as the government itself deputes Muslim officers to run Waqf boards and a number of southern states already have an administrative cadre consisting of Hindu officers to run temples. AIMMM also demands that the expenditure of waqf boards should be fully met by state governments.

Subramaniam Swamy’s hate-mongering
AIMMM takes note of a highly provocative article Janata Party president and former M.P. Subramanian Swamy has published recently in a Mumbai newspaper calling for many undemocratic steps including disfranchisement of minorities who do not proudly own up their Hindu roots and the demolition of 300 mosques across India starting with Gyanvapi in Varanasi. Constitutional authorities, especially the Election Commission, should make sure that a person holding such rabid fascist views does not benefit from the freedoms allowed by Indian democracy.

Forbesganj Killings
The AIMMM condemns the killing of innocents at Bhajanpura in Forbesganj by Bihar police on 3 June 2011 when democratically and peacefully protesting villagers were attacked by Bihar Police killing four innocents including a child and a pregnant woman. The Bihar government has failed to take action against the criminals in khaki and has not paid compensation to the killed and injured victims. AIMMM demands Nitish Kumar government to urgently suspend all police personnel who took part in the crime, arrange their quick trial and without delay pay proper compensation to all the victims of the police brutality. The AIMMM also noted the futility of the current low level magisterial enquiry and demanded a CBI enquiry into the brutal firing.

Violations in Kashmir
AIMMM registers its grief and regret that after a considerable period of calm and peace, army and police violations of human rights are back in news including custodial killings and kidnappings. AIMMM wishes to bring to the notice of both the central and state governments that such human rights violations and injustices only further inflame the civilian unrest in the Valley. These violations can be tackled only if the black AFPSA law is withdrawn in its entirety from Kashmir and Manipur.

Entry of foreign retail chains
AIMMM looks with alarm at the central government’s surrender to American pressure to allow foreign direct investment (FDI) in the retail sector in the country. Council of Secretaries has already given its nod to this proposal which may be presented to the Union cabinet in the near future before it is passed by Parliament. This move will destroy the traditional supply chains that have existed in our country for centuries, will render millions of small shopkeepers and hawkers jobless and will be tantamount to inviting a fresh phase of exploitative neocolonialism. AIMMM cautions the government not to wantonly destroy our national economy for the sake of temporary and limited fiscal and foreign policy benefits.

Hurdles to renovate/build mosques
Reports have been coming from Western Uttar Pradesh and now from Maharashtra that local communal outfits are not permitting Muslims to renovate, expand or build mosques. Instances have been reported even from Delhi and neighbouring NOIDA where mosques are not being allowed to be built on perfectly legal plots of land. The issue has been raised in Maharashtra assembly early this month (August 2011). It is high time the central government formulates a clear policy to deal with such communal elements and to discharge its duties to protect the religious rights of the minorities.

Lokpal, corruption and black money
After remaining on the political drawing board for the last four decades, Lok Pal bill is finally going to be placed in Parliament during the current session as a result of unprecedented civil society pressure. AIMMM welcomes this step and wishes to see a strong law covering all political and bureaucratic functionaries of the State with clear-cut powers and deadlines for action against offenders. Eradication of corruption and unearthing of black money should be a priority for the government in order to ensure clean public life and to use all possible national resources for development and poverty alleviation.

Right To Education Bill
HRD Minister’s verbal assurance that Madrasas are exempt from RTE Act is not enough for the community. This assurance should be incorporated into the said act through an amendment stating that madrasas also are educational institutions for the purpose of the law and that students studying in madrasas too are “students” in the eyes of the said law. Moreover, minority educational institutions must also be protected from retrospective implementation of the new RTE norms for schools because the enforcement of these norms on existing minority schools will only mean the certain closure of a majority of these institutions and thereby negating the Articles 29 and 30 of our Constitution.

Communal violence bill
AIMMM hails the efforts to finalise the Communal Violence Prevention bill and hopes that the same will soon be passed by Parliament without any further dilution.

Syria
AIMMM is concerned about the protracted struggle of the Syrian people to bring about democracy in their country and end the one-party sectarian government which has been controlling Syria for the last four decades. AIMMM advises the current government of Syria to read the writing on the wall and hasten with the much needed reforms instead of shedding the blood of the protesters for their rights. A quick resolution of the struggle will avoid foreign intervention which will further ruin and enslave Syria.

Palestine

AIMMM supports the efforts of the Palestinian Authority to gain international recognition for the Palestinian state within 1967 borders through a resolution to be passed by the UN General Assembly next month. AIMMM holds that negotiations with the Israeli occupying state are meaningless as the last two decades after Oslo Accords have shown. Moreover, the Palestinians must be steadfast in their just demands for the return of the 1948 refugees to their homes and lands and the full liberation of Jerusalem from the clutches of the Israeli occupation.

AIMMM is also concerned that the Gaza blockade by the occupying Israeli state is still very much in place and that the Egyptian promises have not been fully translated into facts on the ground. AIMMM exhorts the Egyptian government to take the initiative to fully lift the unjust blockade and to allow the people of Gaza to lead a normal life like all others on this planet.

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 16-31 August 2011 on page no. 12

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