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It is time for renaissance for Muslim community in India, says former AMU V-C

He said modern secular school education for the community is a must for its development.

IANS | Patna |

It is time for renaissance for the country’s Muslim community to develop itself and the nation, said Lt Gen (retd) Zameer Uddin Shah, who was also Vice Chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University, on Wednesday at a discussion on empowering young Muslims.

He said modern secular school education for the community is a must for its development.

“I have been repeatedly requesting all to join us for the renaissance in the Muslim community,” said Shah in his keynote address at a day-long workshop on ‘Strategies and Approaches for Empowering Young Muslims — Building Resilience, strengthening nation’ in Patna.

He said children belonging to the community must be given best school education and for this, the community should build schools with modern outlook with Islamic ethos on the lines of Christian missionaries-run institutions.

“We have set up a modern school in Muzaffarnagar in Uttar Pradesh. It is named Sir Syed National School. AMU students have donated Rs 51 lakh to build this school,” he said. “We hope to set up another similar school in Saharanpur”.

He said he was surprised when 40 Muslim families in Uttar Pradesh came forward to offer 2 acre each for setting up such schools in the state. “Government funds and other forms of assistance may come, but Muslims have to set up world-class schools for children. Other communities have done so,” he said.

Shah said the condition of the Muslim community today is similar to what it was in 1857. “The community is marginalised, impoverished, victimised and at the bottom of development indicators,” he said. “But fault for this pathetic situation of the community lies with us. We have neglected the importance of education, particularly modern education.”

Others prominent people who addressed the workshop included Venkatesh Srinivasan of UNFP, Sadur Rahman of UNICEF, Amir Subhani, principal secretary Minority Welfare, Bihar, and Dr A.S. Nakdar, founder of American Federation of Muslims of Indian Origin.