"The lack of education not only decimates a community but the entire
nation suffers due to it. It is the bounden duty of one and all to
join the movement to conquer illiteracy and spread the light of
knowledge in each and every corner of India".
The above observation was made by Ravi Joshi,
chairman Subhishi College of Nursing & Rahat Charitable Trust
Khargone, while speaking at the inaugural function of the XVIII
Annual International Convention on Education & Gala Award Ceremony
of the American Federation of Muslims of Indian Origin, (AFMI), here
in Indore, the commercial capital of Madhya Pradesh, at Ravindra
Natya Grah on Saturday. The two-day programme is being hosted
jointly in association with Rahat Charitable Trust, Khargone (M.P.)
and Taleem Foundation of Madhya Pradesh. A souvenir was released on
Speaking on the occasion guest of honour
Justice M.S.A Siddiqui, chairman National Commission on Minority
Educational Institutions, said the community has to look within for
its ills and find ways to improve. He further said that the Art. 30
of the Indian Constitution provides especial privileges to minority
"We should take advantage of it and that I
would gladly provide any assistance in the matter whosoever seeks
it”, he declared. He stressed upon the value of tolerance and
communal amity which should be inculcated for peaceful co-existense.
Indore lawmaker Ashwani Joshi welcomed AFMI's
seminar on education. He pointed out that Islam has made it
compulsory to acquire knowledge but Muslims, like the followers of
other religions, do not adhere to their religious edicts
The newly elected Mayor of Indore Krishna
Murari Moghe another guest of honour also spoke on the occasion.
Meanwhile, to a thunderous applause AFMI's Sir
Syed Award-2009 for contributions to the education of Indian Muslims
was presented to Mumbai based educationist Mubarak Kapdi.
It may be mentioned here that Kapdi the
founding president of the National Movement for Education and
chairman of the Maharashtra Urdu High School. He is well known for
his counseling sessions, workshops, motivational speeches, articles,
books, and other educational activities across India. Thousands of
students have benefited from his counsel and went on to successful
careers. His call for 'total education' has been well received
across the country.
While AFMI's Meer Taqi Meer Award 2009 which
was to be presented to noted poet and littérateur Pt. Anand Mohan
Zutshi 'Gulzar' Dehlvi for contributions to Urdu literature could
not be given as he failed to be present on the occasion due to ill
health. The award shall be sent to his home. He is widely hailed as
the reigning king of the Delhi school of Urdu poetry and an
embodiment of the composite (Ganga-Jamuni) culture of India.
Dr. Iqbal Ahmed, incoming president of AFMI for
2010, in his speech gave the statistics about Muslim’s low literacy
levels in India. He said that as a direct consequence of this
Muslims remain marginalized and sometimes resort to all sorts of
unwanted activities. He chided the government for not implementing
Sachchar Committee and other such reports.
Dr. A. R. Nakadar, Trustee AFMI, said the
convention is taking place at a time when the beasts of communalism
and sectarianism are waiting to rip apart the harmony of the nation.
Dr. Nakadar said: "We are determined to march
ahead and contribute to the development of our beloved India into a
true superpower. Our vision is to equip each and every Muslim child
in India with the liberating tool of knowledge. As part of this
project we partnered with a number of local organizations across the
country to support schools, initiate teacher training programmes,
establish scholarships and initiate other related programmes"
Continuing he said: "We attained some success
in this regard as can be seen from the rise in literacy levels. We
make this acknowledgment with the assertion that we are not finished
yet. We still have many hurdles to clear before we attain our aim of
100 per cent literacy among the Muslim community".
Earlier, Niyaz Ahmed, chairman of the
organizing committee, delivered the welcome address. The vote of
thanks was proposed by Dr. Aslam Abdullah, Trustee AFMI. Dr. M. A.
Farooqui, ex-Director Higher Education, Ministry of Higher
Education, FDR Ethiopia, conducted the function.
At the outset Maulana Abu Rehan Farooqui
recited verses from the Holy Qur'an and thereafter translated it in
Urdu. The students of Jamia Aisha Care Moral Madarsa of Indore
rendered the Qaumi Tarana "Sare Jahan Se Achcha Hindustan Hamara".
Delegates and students who have achieved
educational excellence in Std. X and Std. XII in different states
of India, who will receive Gold, Silver and Bronze medals have come
to Indore for the AFMI convention.
It may be mentioned here that AFMI is a
philanthropic charity organization founded by American Muslims of
Indian Origin in the year 1989. AFMI strives to improve the
socio-economic status of the underprivileged Indian Muslim
minorities through education.