He added that it is pity that certain forces are trying to destroy the unique social fabric and glorious culture of India. “We Indians have always been proud of how different faiths have been co-existing peacefully and creating a culture that drew upon the best that each community had to offer,” said Mr Naqvi.
He further said it is feared that soon only a pale shadow of the harmony that once existed will remain unless we do something about it.
During the talk, Mr. Naqvi threw light on various deliberate and inadvertent acts that have contributed to the ‘othering’ of certain communities in India. He spoke on how divisions between different religions began in the modern era.
AMU Vice Chancellor, Lt. General Zameeruddin Shah (Veteran) in his presidential remarks said that if there is hatred and if there are differences, it is important to identify the quislings and prevent attacks on our Country’s social fabric.
General Shah pointed out that the real danger lies in the silence of people and it is the need of the hour to speak up in genuine terms on the behalf of all communities. He further said that people need to speak from their mind and avoid being aggressive.
AMU Vice Chancellor also said that AMU students are the future of the nation and they should make the maximum use of their time in reading and understanding things for the betterment of the country.
Delivering the welcome address, Professor Shafey Kidwai said that Mr Naqvi’s books in general and ‘Being the Other-The Muslim in India’ in particular is an essential read for those interested in understanding the forces that have shaped the religious divide and its consequences.
Prof. Kidwai added that in the course of reading the book, readers can investigate the major missteps that took place after independence and see how some instances could have been better handled. He also pointed out that Mr. Naqvi’s book points out at how our politicians, power brokers, ordinary citizens have failed to reach out to bridge the divide between various communities.
While proposing the vote of thanks, AMU Public Relations Officer, Mr Omar S Peerzada conveyed gratitude to the Vice Chancellor and Pro Vice Chancellor for having constituted the Bicentenary Committee for the celebrations of the 200thbirth anniversary of AMU founder Sir Syed Ahmad Khan under the able leadership of Professor A R Kidwai in much advance.
He added that AMU holds an emotional bond with Mr. Naqvi and looks up to him for educating the young minds in the campus. “I am sure, Mr. Naqvi’s mesmerizing talk on the chosen subject of his interest has left a deep impact on everyone present in today’s program,” said Mr. Peerzada.