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Incumbent on Muslims to reaffirm image of Islam as religion of peace, mercy
Says Dr. Abdulaziz Othman Altwaijri at Aligarh Muslim University convocation, lauds AMU for launching Bridge Course for Madrasa graduates
Thursday October 16, 2014 9:18 PM, Staff Writer

The Aligarh Muslim University today organized it's 62nd Annual Convocation. While, more than 4,000 University degrees were awarded, around 240 gold medals were given to University students.

AMU Convocation
[Dr. Abdulaziz Othman Altwaijri presenting the convocation address at the 62nd Annual Convocation of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) on October 16, 2014.]

Director General, Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO), Rabat, Morocco and Secretary General of Federation of Universities of Islamic World (FUIW), Dr. Abdulaziz Othman Altwaijri today called upon Muslim youth in India and all over the world to come forward and project the "true, humanitarian and inclusive image of Islam" to the rest of the world.

Delivering the Convocation Address at the 62nd Annual Convocation of the Aligarh Muslim University here today, Altwaijri, who is a noted educationist in the Middle East, said that in today's world, which is threatened by the divisive forces of "terrorism and senseless violence", it had become incumbent on Muslim youth to reaffirm the image of Islam as a "religion of peace and mercy".

He said, "Islam teaches us to be thoughtful, considerate and open minded to humanity at large. It is imperative that we now present the true face of Islam before the world instead of a distorted one".

He pointed out that a feeling of false superiority and self righteousness would never allow any society to progress in today's world.

Altwaijri said that progress in today's world "progress can only take place in an atmosphere of inclusiveness".

He said he was confident that the fresh graduates of the Aligarh Muslim University were embarking upon "a new journey to serve the Muslim community as well as all humanity for enlightenment and progress in all avenues".

He lauded the AMU for launching a Bridge Course for graduates of religious Madrasas (Quranic schools) for providing a link between Quranic schools and modern education.

This step of the AMU, he said, would not only improve the skills of Madrasa students by opening the doors of modern education, but would also help them in playing a more meaningful role for the general benefit of the community.

He said that this was a forward looking initiative in helping society in the "broadest sense of the word".

AMU Convocation
[A scene of students and audience at the 62nd Annual Convocation]

Earlier, delivering the University's Annual Report, AMU Vice Chancellor, Lt. Gen. Zameer Uddin Shah (Retd.) said that the Madrasa Bridge Course was a "unique initiative which will go a long way making Madrasa students stakeholders in nation building".

He said that the AMU was fully aware not only of its responsibility in raising academic standards but also in fulfilling its social responsibilities to the country as a whole.

Gen. Shah said that the AMU reiterates its commitment to nation building and the ideals of its founder, Sir Syed Ahmad Khan.

He said that our minority character is very dear to us and that is why we are critically examining the government proposal for a common act and common entrance test for all central universities.

The Vice Chancellor said that AMU is ranked 80th in Asia by Times Higher Education University Rankings 2014 and third among Indian Universities.

The Vice Chancellor Lt General Zameeruddin Shah maintained that AMU has always been a premier institution of higher education and research which has enormously contributed in nation building.

The Vice Chancellor further pointed out that among the BRICS nations (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa), AMU is ranked 50th and according to the Neilson Annual College Survey, the J N Medical college was ranked 15th out of the 300 medical colleges which were surveyed.

He also reminded that the AMU's Law Faculty which was ranked 11th in 2007 is now ranked 6th among the law colleges in India.

While talking about boosting research facilities, the Vice Chancellor stated that an Innovation Council has been established which will award two 'outstanding researchers of an academic year' with a prize of Rs. one Lakh.

He further stated that during the 'Sir Syed Innovation Festival' atleast two prizes for a University student and a University School student of Rs 50, 000 and Rs 25, 000 respectively will be handed over for best innovations by students.

The Vice Chancellor also laid emphasis on vocational training by stating that the Community College's Nodal Office is been established with a UGC grant of Rs 185 Lakhs to start Bachelors in vocational courses under National Vocational Education Qualification Framework (NVEQF).

Talking about the social responsibility, the Vice Chancellor said that AMU dispatched a relief team of doctors and paramedical staff soon after the state of Jammu and Kashmir was hit a devastating flood.

General Shah also said that the University students even decided to forego Sir Syed Day Dinner to send relief to the flood victims. The University employees have donated on day's salary for J&K flood victims: confirmed the Vice Chancellor.

He said that every department now has a placement cell, around 50 reputed companies and organizations including the leading business houses such as TATA consultancy, ICICI Bank, Wipro, Eureka Forbes, Vasan Hospitals, NIIT, etc recruited our students: said the Vice Chancellor.

The Pro-Vice Chancellor, Brigadier S. Ahmad Ali read out the citations of Dr. Abdulaziz Othman Altwaijri, Dr. Shamsheer Vayalil Parambath and Mr. Nadeem A. Tarin.

While accepting the Honoris Causa, Dr Shamsheer Vayalil Parambath, Managing Director, VPS Health Care, Abu Dhabi, UAE said that visiting the Aligarh Muslim University always has been like a pilgrimage for him.

He added that he has vowed to devote himself for the benefit of the society and everything that he owned belongs to all fellows who have been deprived of health care life.

He also said that he dedicates this great honor conferred on him today by the Aligarh Muslim University to every citizen of this global village who has dedicated his life to the society. Dr Shamsheer was awarded a Dlitt and DSE honors Degree.

In the acceptance of Honoris Causa, Nadeem A Tarin, General Manager, Salman Al-Terais and Partners Limited, Riyadh, KSA said that he feels that the thoughts of Sir Syed 140 years ago are more relevant today than they were before and a considerable amount of effort is required to be made by all of us to make this institution more beneficial, reliable and strong for the community and the nation.

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