India

Telangana Industrial Policy To Be World’s Best: KCR

Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao told a delegation led by Piramal Group chairman Ajay Piramal that the Telangana government’s upcoming industrial policy would be the world’s best, and would be finalized within the next 1-2 days. The Chief Minister said that the government’s industrial policy would be implemented in letter and spirit. A chasing cell would be monitoring, from the Chief Minister’s office, the progress of investment by industrialists from all over the country and abroad. He said that the government would declare certain identified land as exclusively meant for industrial purposes, develop it in all aspects, provide power and water, and then place it at the disposal of the industrialists. KCR informed that right now about 200,000 acres of land was available to establish industries, and all this would be allotted to the Telangana State Industrial Infrastructure Corporation (TSIIC), and the whole area would be brought under a special single window act to be brought soon. The Chief Minister recalled his meeting with Azim Premji of Wipro a couple of days back, who promised to establish industries in Hyderabad where 5,000 persons would get employment. KCR offered Piramal the required facilities, and told his group to come and establish industries of its choice. The Chief Minister said in future there would be zero corruption in the State, unlike in the past. He also said that after declaration of the Industrial Policy, an industrialist could just download an application and fill it up to apply for an industry. After establishing the genuineness of the applicant on scrutiny in a day or two, a call would go to the industrialist to come to Hyderabad and meet the Chief Minister. The prospective industrialist would be received at the airport by the State government protocol department, and would be taken straight to the Chief Minister for presentation of the case and discussions. The industrialist would not need to go to several places for clearances, and through a single window all clearances would be given in two weeks. The Chief Minister said that a pack containing the clearances would be handed over to the industrialist. Responding to the issue of power shortage, the Chief Minister, while agreeing that there was shortage, said that to the present 4,000 MW thermal power, an additional 2,350 MW of power would be added by 2015. In addition, a power project of 4,000 MW from NTPC dedicated to Telangana would also come up soon. The Chief Minister assured that in 3 years Telangana would be power surplus state, and to this effect short-term, medium-term and long-term plans were being drawn up. The Chief Minister said that within the next 3-4 months, Telangana would be the most happening State in the country for investments and more. The Chief Minister told Piramal to make use of the proposed Pharma City in and around Telangana, where he could have his industries and residential colonies for employees, all in one place. Education Minister Jagadish Reddy, Chief Secretary Rajeev Sharma, Principal Secretary to CM S Narsing Rao and others were also present in the meeting. (INN)

Pharma Cities Around Hyderabad On 8,000 Acres

In about 7,000-8,000 acres of land accessible though the National highway and a railway track, a Pharma City or a group of Pharma Cities are likely to come up around Hyderabad in about a year’s time. The Pharma Cities will include both industries as well as residential colonies. Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao mentioned this to a group of members belonging to the Bulk Drug Manufacturers Association led by President Jayanth Tagore and General Secretary R K Agarwal. The Chief Minister said that the proposed pharma city would be beyond the expectations of drug manufacturers. It would be exemplary and pollution free, and with its coming up the pharma industry would grow manifold. He said that the Pharma City was expected to accommodate about 5,00,000 employees and their families in the residential colony, hitting about 20,00,000 over a period of time. The Chief Minister also said that a power plant with 500 MW capacity would be established adjacent to the Pharma City to provide captive, dedicated and uninterrupted power supply to the pharma industry. The required land, infrastructure facilities, communication facility, power supply, water supply etc. for the Pharma City will be provided by the government. The Chief Minister said that international-level consultancies, experts in developing industrial estates, would be contacted to design the Pharma City. KCR expressed hope that once the Pharma City was developed, all the drug and pharma companies would move there, including their ancillaries. Earlier, the Association President and General Secretary, making a presentation to the Chief Minister on the salient features of the Telangana pharmaceutical industry, mentioned that 30% of medicines exported to the USA were from Telangana. The total production was valued at Rs. 65,168 crores, and exports of medicines from Telangana were valued at Rs. 32,584 crores, they added. They said that the pharmaceutical industry in Telangana contributed substantially to the Central and State exchequers. The direct and indirect employment generation was 1,00,000 to 5,00,000 respectively, they claimed. The drugs manufacturers’ association requested the Chief Minister to create an exclusive department for pharma, to which the Chief Minister responded positively. Principal Secretary to Chief Minister S Narsing Rao and Additional Secretary to the Chief Minister Smitha Sabarwal also attended the meeting. (INN)

Telangana To Buy 1000 MW Power From Chattisgarh

Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao has issued instructions to the Managing Director of Transco Rizvi to initiate steps immediately for obtaining power from Chattisgarh on both a long-term and a medium-term basis. The Chief Minister told the Managing Director to buy 1000 MW of power from the Chattisgarh government immediately by entering into a Memorandum Of Understanding with the Chattisgarh State Power Distribution Company, and entering into a PPA for the Power Grid Corporation of India Ltd (PGCL) lines. KCR also directed Transco to obtain 1500 MW of power through dedicated lines, and asked for tenders to be called for drawing lines. In addition, the Chief Minister wants 2000MW power for the medium term from Chattisgarh to meet Telangana’s needs for the coming 5-year period. The Transco Managing Director has been advised to connect constantly with the Chattisgarh government for this purpose. The Chief Minister said that Chattisgarh had surplus power and was in a position to spare some to other States, and that it was the only State from which Telangana could obtain power. (INN)
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    Indian educationist calls for more efforts to uplift communities

    Indian educationist calls for more efforts to uplift communities

    JEDDAH: M. NASIR JAWED Very few people have the vision and the will to reverse the tides of an adverse situation. When India’s radical Hindu leader, L.K. Advani, launched a “rath yatra” (Indian for “rally”) that left much death and destruction in its trail, ultimately leading to the destruction of the historic Babri Masjid in 1992, Muslims rose up to face the challenge and pull the community from a state of depression onto a better way forward. Amanullah Khan, chairman of the Muslim Education Trust, held the tide by its horn and launched the same year his education project to campaign for an awareness program to wake up the Muslim community from the slumber of ignorance and illiteracy. “In reply to Advani’s rath yatra, we took out a National Talimi Caravan (an educational countrywide campaign) that same year that crossed the length and breadth of the country to stress the importance of education in the community,” said Khan, who recently visited the Kingdom for a meeting with the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) officials. According to Khan, the Taalimi Caravan since then has led to the opening of thousands of schools in many of the provinces, mainly the Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and the West Bengal. The caravan, which is still ongoing, has been highly successful since many Muslim leaders, scholars and even politicians joined the call, which strengthened its significance. “The Muslims were feeling low and dejected and hence to counter the effect of Advani’s rally, we launched this educational movement,” the likes of which is hardly to find in India after Sir Syed had launched a similar program by the end of the 19th century. In fact, to revive that Sir Syed Movement, Khan has now initiated an All India Muslim Educational Conference and on the same line of Sir Syed, is holding educational conferences every year. He said the first such conference was held in Delhi in 2010, followed by West Bengal (2012) Azamgarh, UP (2012), Cuttack (2013) and Delhi (2014). The 2015 conference will be held between March 1 and 28 in Jodhpur, Rajasthan. Amanullah’s efforts were recognized, as the IDB has run a scholarship program in India through his Muslim Education Trust (MET) since 1989 to work for the upliftment of minorities by giving top priority to education. Khan launched the “Aligarh Bachchon ka Ghar” (Aligarh orphanage), which, over the years, has become a model orphan care center that has its own hostel, playground and other logistic facilities in its own premises. Orphans, whether girls or boys, are fully adopted and taken care of to the same standard of children in secure families. They also attend good local schools. There are also 400 destitute children admitted as day boarders. - Arab News
    India Islamic Culture Centre Invites Dr. Rashid Shaz.

    India Islamic Culture Centre Invites Dr. Rashid Shaz.

    ‘Problem lies nowhere else but right inside the Muslim mind’ was one of the important messages of renowned Scholar Dr. Rashid Shaz to the audience, when he was addressing a group of expatriates during an Iftaar Party organized by Riyadh Chapter of India Islamic Cultural Centre (IICC) on the occasion of the blessed month of Ramadhan. Dr. Rashid Shaz applauded the role of India Islamic Cultural Centre which has the purpose of promoting mutual understanding and amity amongst the people and to depict the true face of Islam which is most tolerant, liberal, progressive, rational and forward looking religion. Author of more than twenty five books in English, Urdu and Arabic, Dr. Shaz emphasized that a paradigm shift is required in our thinking as traditional mind will lead the Muslims nowhere. ‘The future depends not on Islamic evangelism, or any other evangelism for that matter, as many of us would like to believe, but on Islamic intellectualism, on our rediscovery of the great prophetic mission’ said Dr. Rashid Shaz. IICC Convener Murshid Kamal welcomed Dr. Rashid Shaz and thanked him for his time to attend the event. He conveyed the best wishes of IICC President Mr Sirajuddin Qureshi and extended all the support on his behalf required for any debates or seminar on the Muslim issues highlighted by Dr. Rashid Shaz. ‘Since IICC provides a forum where scholars from all fields of learning can interact with each other to promote brotherhood, friendship, peace and amity amongst the groups, a brain storming session would be organized by IICC to support such noble cause’ added Murshid. Kaunain Shahidi, IICC Life Member conducted the program and thanked the audience to make the event successful. ‘It is our pride to have scholar like Dr.Rashid Shaz, and his pragmatic approach towards the Muslims issues are the need of the hour which shall be welcomed’, said Shahidi. Short documentary about IICC, indicating its purpose of spreading message of Islam and contribution to the society in general was also showed, and appreciated by more than 100 attendees. Life Members of IICC, Tarique Masood, Mohammed Zaigham Khan, Feroze Rehman, Mohd Akram, Laique Azmi, Khursheed Anwar, Nusrat Ali, Syed Muneer, Amanullah, Shahid Azam, Chairman of Hira International, Salim Zubeidi, President of AMOUBA, Dr. Ahmed Badsha, President of Jamia Alumni Association, Ghizal Mahdi, Chairman of Biswas Obaidur Rehman & Gen Sec. Akhtarul Islam, President of United India Association Dr. Ashraf Ali, Director of Indian Public School Salman Khalid and Maulana Najeeb Qasmi were prominent personalities to attend the event. Other among present were, AR Saleem, Naushad Ahmed, Abdul Ahad, Md Owais, Arif Shah, Asif Iqbal, Aftab Nizami, Mohd Shaheen, Hilal Ahmed, and many more members of Indian communities. The event started with Tilawat-e-Quran by Shabbir Nadwi while Zaigham Khan presented a vote of thanks to the guests and audience and invited them for the Dinner. - Yahind.com
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    World

    Municipality ends ‘shawarma row’

    Municipality ends ‘shawarma row’

    ACTION THAT WENT VIRAL: The image of the three workers in a restaurant on a vertical skewer holding a large quantity of shawarma.The Riyadh Municipality clarified the image of the three workers preparing a large quantity of shawarma (grilled chicken meat on large vertical skewers) in unsanitary conditions is that of a restaurant in Turkey and not in the Kingdom. The image went viral on social media networks raising a lot of concern about the hygiene and sanitation levels in the Kingdom. The questions however can now be laid to rest following a long investigation by officials from the municipality who identified that the picture was taken in a Turkish restaurant in Turkey and that it had done the rounds of social network sites earlier. The General Director of the Environmental Health Department in Riyadh, Mohamed Moaamn, confirmed that the captured image is of three workers in a famous restaurant in Turkey, and also confirmed that the picture had previously appeared on Turkish websites. Moaamn expressed his appreciation toward the residents of the capital for alerting the municipality and reporting the three workers through the emergency hotline number 940. The Riyadh Municipality had earlier called on all citizens and residents to cooperate with them and to report any information before receiving the picture about three workers preparing shawarma in unhygienic conditions at a restaurant. The efforts to investigate and confirm the issue represents the municipality’s keenness, as per the instructions of the Mayor of Riyadh Region, Abdullah bin Abdulrahman Al-Mokebel, to provide a safe, healthy environment for the customers in the capital and to seriously address any violation of the health regulations. - Arab News
    Dr. Camad Ali—Symbol of hope for peace

    Dr. Camad Ali—Symbol of hope for peace

    Dr. Camad Ali- By Javid Hassan* Princess Maria Amor Torres, an American philanthropist, has joined expatriates in Saudi Arabia in paying glowing tributes to Dr. Datu Camad Ali, Executive President and founder of SPMUDA, an international NGO from the Philippines, on the occasion of his birthday today (Sunday). They have also suggested that Dr. Camad Ali, who has been nominated for Nobel Peace Prize 2014, could act as a catalyst for change in today’s globalized village. The way forward, according to them, is through cooperation among Indian and Filipino expatriates in the Kingdom for a common cause. They point out that SPMUDA, which has a strong base among Saudis and Indian expatriates residing there, could use its contacts in mobilizing the technical and other resources of Indian and Filipino expatriates in the Kingdom. A triangular partnership among Saudi Arabia, India and the Philippines has been proposed for boosting economic cooperation in their mutual benefit. It will also give a booster shot to the ‘Look East’ policy common to both Saudi Arabia and India. In her tribute, Princess Maria said:”As a family man, I know that his family comes first before anything else because this defines him as a person. I am a living witness that he cares for children equally for his wife that makes him one of the strongest and most respected leaders in the world!” She continues: “My wish for his birthday is to achieve the mission and vision of SPMUDA and the Royal House of Baloi and to maintain, if not exceed, the present integrity and dignity of this organization globally.” Describing Dr. Camad Ali as “a world leader”, she said “he is a combination of Nelson Mandela, Mahatma Gandhi and other peace leaders… Like them, his brilliant mind is combined with his golden heart and his love for humanity is immeasurable.” Princess Maria, who is Founder-President, We Care for Humanity, an NGO based in Los Angeles, said that she deemed it a great honour in “nominating Dr. Datu Camad Ali for the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize. Dr. Ali is the founding president of Southern Philippine Muslim and Non-Muslim Unity Development Association, International, one of the largest peace organizations in the world based in the Philippines.” In her letter to the Norwegian Nobel Committee dated February 9, 2014, Princess Maria Amor observed:” In many ways exceeding the challenging requirements and expectations for the award, Dr. Datu Camad Ali’s ambitions, intelligence, and accomplishments complement precisely the stellar community of past recipients and make him highly deserving of the honor and opportunity bestowed by the Nobel Peace Prize. “Dr. Ali has so much care for the world that he managed to unite more than 2,000 representatives of goodwill and humanity across the globe towards one goal, ‘world peace’. Through his coalition with many other peace organizations and government agencies worldwide, he played important roles in the release of wrongly accused victims and prisoners of wars,” she points out.. In his birth day tributes, Abdul Hannan Tago, Senior Reporter of Arab News in Riyadh, said: “There are emerging noble leaders now from various countries who are dedicating their service for humanity. In the Philippines, we have Datu Camad Ali, the founder chairman of the SPMUDA International.” He said: “This man happened to be a Muslim in that majority catholic country in Asia. But for him he understands that every human being is created to live equally and has rights to drink, eat and dress as others do on this earth. Camad does not look at the boundaries to prevent him in serving those unfortunate and poor people in the world. He uses his own resources to do so, while living in a very simple and small rented house.” In this respect, Abdul Hannan notes, Dr Camad Ali stands out in sharp contrast to those given to “selfishness, blind and aggressive love for power and wealth.” He said “people in all continents, without exception, particularly in Asia, Africa and now in the Middle East, have suffered a lot from these individual behaviour in terms of their political agenda, grabbing all possible sources and using even destructive tools” in pursuit of their agenda. He continues: “They cause not only eliminating their opponents in politics and wealth but also causing much damage to the environment. They don’t care what their equipments do for the health and environment.” “Some of these elements,” says the journalist, “are using religion or ethnic affiliation for their agenda while looking at other’s belief as hindrance to their way to their main goals. For them, they would sacrifice other inhabitants on this earth if they simply oppose their ambitious agenda. “Yet, there are very few in this world who would serve humanity and devote themselves for their welfare regardless of their race, color and faith. We had among them who have already passed away, like Nelson Mandela, Mahatma Gandhi who fought for their people in their respective countries,” Abdul Hannan said, adding that Dr. Camad Ali has been following in their footsteps. In another tribute, Prof. Mirza Baig, a Canadian professor at King Saud University in Riyadh, described Dr. Camad Ali “as an activist for human rights and peace. But to me he is not only a reformer and but also an environmentalist.” He said: “Dr. Camad Ali believes in the respect of the human rights in the society and at the work place. He is the greatest admirer of nature and living organisms of the ecosystem. His mission is to ensure that enough food is being produced in a safe environment for every single human being. He has developed a working model for the living and working of all the human beings. He attaches the great importance to the forests and the other natural resources and wants to conserve them for the future generations.” Prof. Baig concludes: “He is very much concerned over the climate change and helping organizations and the governments to cope with the emerging issues faced by the humanity and human beings.” According to Syed Ziaur Rahman, Chief Executive Officer of Mawiyah Medical Group in Riyadh, the SPMUDA chairman could act as a catalyst for change through his organization, which is well connected with influential Saudis and Indian expatriates. By mobilizing their resources, he could play a useful role in promoting economic development in the Philippines as well as in Saudi Arabia and India by turns. In this context, Ziaur Rahman said the IT major Wipro, the third largest software exporter from India (which is also present in Saudi Arabia), has decided to set up a development centre in the Philippines.”The centre will employ 1,000 people in the next 18 months,” he quoted Wipro Chairman Azim Premji as saying on the sidelines of Fortune Global Forum held in New Delhi last year. Besides the IT sector, Zia said Indian companies are also teaming up with their counterparts from the Philippines in construction projects. He referred to the GMR, a publicly traded company from Hyderabad (South India), which has gone into partnership with Philippines-based Megawide Construction Corporation. They landed a $700 million contract for modernizing Mactan-Cebu International Airport in the central Philippines. In another development in the same context, 17 teams from various Indian colleges and universities participated last month in the annual Shell Eco-Marathon (SEM) in the Philippines, where contestants had to design a prototype of fuel-efficient cars. The teams competed in various categories — gasoline, battery electric, diesel, and even hydrogen, the most popular category being gasoline. Seven core members from Sir M Visvesvaraya Institute of Technology (VIT), Bangalore, for instance, received nearly 250 online applications to help build their energy-efficient car. Realizing the growth potential in bilateral relations, the Philippine government has made it easier for Indian nationals to enter the country without a visa and stay there up to 14 days so long as they are holders of a valid visa from the European Union or any of six other countries—the US, Canada, Japan, Australia, Singapore and Britain. It may be extended for an additional seven days. The new policy is based on a Department of Foreign Affairs circular issued on March 20, 2013. It’s an accident of history that India and the Philippines have had no cultural, political or economic relations on the level of other ASEAN member countries. In the wake of the economic boom fuelled by the discovery of oil in the Gulf countries, another turn of history has brought Indians and Filipinos closer at the work place. Indian and Filipino expatriates, especially in Saudi Arabia, can have a competitive edge over others if they have good communication skills in Arabic, both oral and written. This is where SPMUDA Ambassadors in Saudi Arabia, both Filipinos and Saudis, could create synergy in the mutual interest of Saudi Arabia, India and the Philippines, or SIP countries, in short. Whether it is investment, manpower supply or transfer of technology, they could come up with projects based on those parameters, enabling the partners to SIP from a regional pool, rich in manpower, technological and economic wealth. It’s an idea whose time has come. It will lend a new momentum to India’s ‘Look East’ policy as well. *The writer is SPMUDA Ambassador of Goodwill in Bangalore.
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    NRI

    Indian community mourns Sanai

    Indian community mourns Sanai - Jul 05 2014

    Attendees who came to pay their respects to Indian community member Afzal Jalaluddin Sanai. — Courtesy photoRIYADH — Indian community members recently gathered to condole the demise of Afzal Jalaluddin Sanai, a prominent ex-NRI businessman and managing director of Arabian Farms, who died in Hyderabad last week. Sanai came to Riyadh in 1977 and spent 35 years contributing greatly to the Indian community. He served as the chairman of the International Indian School Riyadh (IISR) and was president of the Indian Forum. Many members of the Indian community paid their respects to Sanai, recalling his activism and positive contributions. Nadeem Tarin, a philanthropist and NRI businessman, said: “Sanai was popular and considered esteemed among Indian expatriates. He would be remembered by many.” K. N. Wasif, a senior journalist from Hyderabad living in Riyadh, said: “Sanai was a ray of hope for many Indians and while in the Saudi capital, he was a great support and indeed a helping hand to the community. He will be greatly missed.” Tarique Masood, former president AMUOBA in Riyadh, said: “Sanai would be remembered for his philanthropic and social activities.” Salem Zubadi also paid rich tribute to him. Mir Firasat Ali Khusro recited a poem “Main Kaisy Al Wedaa Kahoon.” MAR Saleem presented a PowerPoint presentation on various activities of late Sanai. Abdulaziz Shamim Khan conducted the proceedings. The meeting was organized jointly by A.A.Shamim Khan, MAR Saleem, Aliuddin, Hameed. — SG

    Modi effect: Pravasi Bharatiya Divas shifted from Delhi to Gandhinagar - Jul 03 2014

    January 2015 will see Prime Minister Narendra Modi return home in a big way. The Gujarat government, in its annual 2014-15 budget, announced plans by the Centre to celebrate the next Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD), the Indian government’s annual engagement with the Indian diaspora by the Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs, at the Mahatma Mandir in Gandhinagar in 2015. The event, hosted from January 7-9 every year since 2003 to celebrate the return of India’s best known pravasi, Mahatma Gandhi, from South Africa in 1915, will be held in Modi’s home state to coincide with the celebration of 100 years of Mahatma’s return, at the iconic Mahatma Mandir, the convention centre built by Modi in Gandhinagar. The PBD is a distinguished gathering of Indians from across the world and is addressed by the President, Prime Minister, the overseas Indian affairs minister and other dignitaries. It has always been held at Vigyan Bhavan in New Delhi so far. This will be followed by the flagship investment event, the seventh edition of the biennial Vibrant Gujarat Global Investors Summit (VGGIS) to be held at the same venue from January 11-13. Both events began in 2003. Giving out its priority countries in the forthcoming summit, the Anandi Patel government announced plans to set up international desks in the US, Singapore, Japan, Canada and China “to facilitate investment in Gujarat by foreign investors and for effective exchange of information”, said the budget statement. The government also announced that the VGGIS would have 107 seminars or summits in the upcoming edition. Vadodara rewarded for Modi’s big win Vadodara constituency from where Prime Minister Narendra Modi won with a huge margin in the recently concluded Lok Sabha polls, has been rewarded by the BJP government in the state with sops. The Lok Sabha seat will see a bypoll in October as Modi vacated it in favour ofVaranasi seat of Uttar Pradesh from where he also won by a huge margin. The Gujarat government has made provisions of around Rs 157 crore for Vadodara in its budget on Tuesday. These provisions have promised a number of benefits for the city, like a knowledge hub consisting of five universities, a convention centre, musical garden at Aajwa and development of MSU’s Engineering faculty. Modi won by a record margin of 5.70 lakh votes. from Vadodara — the highest winning margin in the 2014 elections and second highest in any Lok Sabha elections. However, Modi retained the Varanasi seat. Gujarat Finance Minister Saurabh Patel, who happens to be from Akota Assembly segment of Vadodara, is also among the probable candidates to contest the Vadodara bypoll. The state government has announced that it envisages an innovative and world-class knowledge hub that would be developed as a special education-cum-sports zone spreading over a large area in Vadodara. This hub will accommodate Children’s University, Teachers’ University, Sports University and Central University all of which are currently in Gandhinagar. The sports university is yet to be set up. The state government is also planning to establish GSFC University on an approximate area of 25 hectares in Padra taluka of the district near the proposed knowledge hub. Besides, a provision of Rs 7 crore has been made to develop the infrastructure facilities at the engineering faculty of the MSU, which is completing 125 years of its existence. An international-level convention centre at an estimated cost of Rs 50 crore has also been planned for the district. The government has allocated Rs 15 crore to develop a musical garden at the famous Aajwa Dam under the total project cost of Rs 35 crore which will be completed on PPP basis. An Overseas Employment and Career Guidance Centre has been also planned for Vadodara. A provision of Rs 10 crore has also been made for the management of the newly-constructed Sport Complex in Vadodara. A provision of Rs 7 crore has been made for measuring all properties and getting the property cards prepared after checking the record of rights in Vadodara and Bhavnagar.
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    Indian educationist calls for more efforts to uplift communities

    Indian educationist calls for more efforts to uplift communities

    JEDDAH: M. NASIR JAWED Very few people have the vision and the will to reverse the tides of an adverse situation. When India’s radical Hindu leader, L.K. Advani, launched a “rath yatra” (Indian for “rally”) that left much death and destruction in its trail, ultimately leading to the destruction of the historic Babri Masjid in 1992, Muslims rose up to face the challenge and pull the community from a state of depression onto a better way forward. Amanullah Khan, chairman of the Muslim Education Trust, held the tide by its horn and launched the same year his education project to campaign for an awareness program to wake up the Muslim community from the slumber of ignorance and illiteracy. “In reply to Advani’s rath yatra, we took out a National Talimi Caravan (an educational countrywide campaign) that same year that crossed the length and breadth of the country to stress the importance of education in the community,” said Khan, who recently visited the Kingdom for a meeting with the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) officials. According to Khan, the Taalimi Caravan since then has led to the opening of thousands of schools in many of the provinces, mainly the Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and the West Bengal. The caravan, which is still ongoing, has been highly successful since many Muslim leaders, scholars and even politicians joined the call, which strengthened its significance. “The Muslims were feeling low and dejected and hence to counter the effect of Advani’s rally, we launched this educational movement,” the likes of which is hardly to find in India after Sir Syed had launched a similar program by the end of the 19th century. In fact, to revive that Sir Syed Movement, Khan has now initiated an All India Muslim Educational Conference and on the same line of Sir Syed, is holding educational conferences every year. He said the first such conference was held in Delhi in 2010, followed by West Bengal (2012) Azamgarh, UP (2012), Cuttack (2013) and Delhi (2014). The 2015 conference will be held between March 1 and 28 in Jodhpur, Rajasthan. Amanullah’s efforts were recognized, as the IDB has run a scholarship program in India through his Muslim Education Trust (MET) since 1989 to work for the upliftment of minorities by giving top priority to education. Khan launched the “Aligarh Bachchon ka Ghar” (Aligarh orphanage), which, over the years, has become a model orphan care center that has its own hostel, playground and other logistic facilities in its own premises. Orphans, whether girls or boys, are fully adopted and taken care of to the same standard of children in secure families. They also attend good local schools. There are also 400 destitute children admitted as day boarders. - Arab News
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