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This Indian professor doesn't want to return from Japan

Thursday March 17, 2011 06:09:46 PM, Shahnawaz Akhtar, IANS

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Bhopal: Even as Japan faces the worst tragedy since World War-II, 55-year-old Saleem-ul-Rahman Nadvi, who has been living in the island nation for last 30 years, doesn't want to return to his hometown here as he doesn't want to "deceive" the country that has given him everything.

"Japan and Japanese people have given me everything and it would be deceitful if me and my family return to India at this juncture," Nadvi told IANS over phone from Tokyo.

Nadvi, an Arabic professor at Chuo University, also has his two brothers Obaid-ul-Rahman and Fahim-ul-Rehman living in Japan. While Obaid lives in Tokyo, Fahim is based in Niigata Prefecture, which lies on the northwest coast.

While Fahim has also decided against coming back, Obaid may return as his family is putting a lot of pressure.

Japan was hit by a 9 point earthquake March 11 that triggered a devastating tsunami. Three nuclear reactors have been damaged, escalating fears of a nuclear meltdown.

Nadvi, who is a well-known personality in the Islamic fraternity of Japan, said the conditions were tough. He said he had heard about the death of one person from India.

Even though the situation is still very delicate and there is an impending threat of the radiation leaks, Nadvi told IANS: "The Japanese are self-disciplined and the most impressive thing about them is that they are always willing to sacrifice for their fellow citizens."

Nadvi might be unperturbed but his mother in Bhopal is visibly anxious. Initially, the family members avoided intimating her about the situation in Japan, "but since everyone was calling us to enquire about my brothers in Japan, we had to inform her," said Kaleem-ul-Rahman, Nadvi's brother who lives in Bhopal.

"Though their places are relatively far from the epicentre of the quake, still the apocalyptic scenario being painted in the news has worried us. We are in constant touch with them, and thankfully the lines of communication are not affected," he said.

Nadvi went to the island nation in the 1980s and the King Saud University appointed him as the religious representative to Japan. He married a Japanese woman in 1989 and has seven children.

At Nadvi's house in Muqaddas Nagar in the old city, his 75-year-old mother stares at the television set, concerned about her sons. Her grandchildren interpret the latest news to her but understandably filter a lot of matter, fearing it might affect her health.

Kaleem says that on March 11, Nadvi, who is also a Imam, had gone to Chiba city, some 40 km east of the centre of Tokyo, to lead the congressional Friday prayers.

At the time the prayers were being held, the earthquake shook Japan. Nadvi's family had feared the worst, but luckily he returned safely to Tokyo at night.

Meanwhile, Obaid's wife Zohra is convinced that he will return soon. "He called us within 10 minutes of the earthquake and we told him to return," said a grim looking Zohra.

(Shahnawaz Akhtar can be contacted at





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