Category Archives: Achievers

An open letter to the new VC of AMU

Professor Tariq MansoorDear Tariq Mansoor Sb,
At the outset I would extend my heartiest congratulations to you for being appointed as the new Vice Chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University. This post not only brings great responsibility but also great expectations from all those who are related to this seat of learning by one way of other.
I have been visiting AMU quite often during the last 2-3 years and witnessed many key areas which need immediate attention from the top administration and since you are going to take the charge as the head of the institution, I thought of sharing these observations with you. I hope that under your aegis the situation will improve, and we will see AMU as a leading educational Institute by all real means.

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AMU condoles demise of Farzand Ahmad

Farzand AhmadALIGARH. The Vice Chancellor of the Aligarh Muslim University, Lt. Gen. Zameer Uddin Shah, expressed deep sense of sorrow and grief on the sad demise of noted journalist Farzan Ahmad. Ahmad breathed his last in Lucknow on the second of October after prolonged illness.

Lt. Gen. Shah said that Ahmad, who also served as State Information Commissioner, Bihar and Adviser to Department of Vocational Education, Uttar Pradesh Government, created a niche for himself in the field of journalism through his hard work and determination. He said that Mr. Ahmad’s death had left a huge void in the media world, which would be difficult to fill. He prayed for eternal peace to the departed soul and solace to the bereaved family. Read the rest of this entry

Kalam – The Legacy Lives On

Dr APJ Abdul Kalam“If a country is to be corruption free and become a nation of beautiful minds, I strongly feel there are three key societal members who can make a difference. They are the father, the mother and the teacher”- Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam

WE all know Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam as a great scientist and visionary, but today I am going to touch upon his role as a teacher. It is in this role that he transformed many lives and became a role model of millions.

Years back when he visited Jamia Millia Islamia, he took questions from the students. The first question was, “Which role do you prefer – the president or the scientist?” He promptly replied, “A teacher.” Read the rest of this entry

“Sufism is Not an Innovation but a Classical Tradition of Islam”

Sadia Delvi

Sadia Dehlvi

SADIA DEHLVI is an Indian author and activist. Her most recent book is ‘The Sufi Courtyard: Dargahs of Delhi’. Her first book was ‘Sufism: The Heart of Islam’. In a telephonic interview with Inam Abidi Amrohvi, Muslims Today, Sadia speaks on Sufism, women’s rights and Indian Muslims in general.

How satisfied are you with the progress of Indian Muslims during the last 20 years or so?

Well that’s a very tough question because lot has happened during the last two decades, and I think Muslims have progressed a lot.

When I was growing up, I remember, there was hardly a Muslim middle-class. Just after the partition when we had the landed elites and the poor, you never came across Muslims who were doctors, lawyers, engineers, young politicians, etc. I distinctly remember, I had gone to boarding school in Shimla and I was the only Muslim girl there.

When I look now, I see that things have changed a lot for the better. Today, you see a whole new generation of Indian Muslims who are educated and empowered in the true sense. They are engaged in sports, film industry, media, legal, arts and medical profession. So there has been a tremendous growth during the last twenty years, undoubtedly. But, on the other hand it’s not good enough. We should have progressed much further and become a bigger part of India’s growth story. A lot needs to be done at the grassroot level. You know there are many issues at stake. I find that there is a tremendous thirst for knowledge, to work and be financially independent, in the poor people I work with in the Muslim community, especially amongst the women. So there is a tremendous change in their mental attitudes which is a good sign. They want to progress and are looking for opportunities. Unfortunately the opportunities are not enough. Read the rest of this entry

“We continue to make Urdu as a Muslim Language.”

SALEEM Kidwai is a medieval historian and works in the area of culture conservation. His work includes the translation of Malika Pukhraj’s autobiography in English. In an exclusive interview with Muslims Today, Kidwai shares his thoughts on Awadh and its culture.

Picture of Saleem Kidwai

Saleem Kidwai

MT: What was the Lucknow of the 50s and 60s like? Any fond memories or interesting incidents that you would like to share.

SK: I’ve memories of a slow and very civilised city. But, even then I felt there was something that Lucknow needed. Perhaps that’s why I chose to stay away from the city for 34 years.

MT: What changes do you see in the city and is there something that worries you?

SK: I found it worse. The state has become politically very active. To me Lucknow is a very provincial town, not just in being a small town but also in attitudes. One one level I find the people extremely tolerant and kind and on the other not open to new ideas and change. Read the rest of this entry

“Madrasas have to take right decisions to keep up with the current times.”

PROFESSOR Waseem Akhtar is the Vice Chancellor of Integral University in Lucknow, UP. In an exclusive interview with Muslims Today, Prof. Akhtar speaks at length on how education can transform minorities.

MT: Please tell us about your journey so far.

Prof. Waseem Akhtar

Prof. Waseem Akhtar

WA: I remember as a child often diving into my world of dreams. Sometime I swam, sometime I drowned and at times even flew. In real life too wherever I worked, be it in India or the Middle East, I always strived for innovation. By the grace of God my efforts were appreciated.

Years back while working as a Principal in a school I wanted to bring about some major changes, but couldn’t, because of certain limitations. The thought stayed with me and I bought a 25000 sq mt of land to build a school of my own vision. We started in a hut with four students and two teachers, including me. Dreams started shaping up fast, first came the high school, and then followed a polytechnic, an engineering college, a pharmacy college, a management college and other professional offerings. Read the rest of this entry

Life of a Painter

DOCUMENTARY ‘Road Map of Yasin‘, produced by Aseem Asha Foundation, is based on 85 years old veteran artist Mohammed Yasin.

Yasin’s most important contribution goes to the art of calligraphy. He chose to work in an abstract symbolic manner. Geometrical elements – the circle within the square, concentric circles, comprise the basic structure emphasising a symmetrical arrangement and abstract formal values, calm and quiet they are nevertheless active fields. They seem to be deeply influenced by Buddhist art. They generate impulses of colour and focus attention on the images- the symbolic images- they contain.

His early works have explored all available mediums from lithography, etching, aquatint, engraving, dry point, serigraphy, mezzotint water colors, oils, gouache and egg tempora. His works are very poetic and also dramatic.

Tantric symbolism, Sufi mysticism, echoes of the miniature schools, shades of thankas and pictorialised Arabic calligraphy – all these inspirations could be identified in Yasin’s work.

Books on Sir Syed released

ALIGARH. Two books, “Afkar-i-Sir Syed Ki Asri Maanwiyat” and “Ihya-e-Islam Ki Aalami Jidd-o-Jehd Aur Maujooda Challenges”, authored by Dr. Tauqueer Alam Falahi of Department of Theology were released by the Vice Chancellor, Aligarh Muslim University, Lt. General (Retd.) Zameer Uddin Shah and former Pro-Chancellor, Nawab Ibne Saeed Khan of Chhatari earlier this month.

Appreciating the work of Dr. Falahi, the VC said that his books have covered a large spectrum of issues and challenges faced by the Muslim community in the world. He said that the biggest problems before the community are lack of proper education and ignorance of women to their rights. He said that Dr. Falahi has categorically analysed these issues and provided solutions in the light of historical and cultural development of the community. Read the rest of this entry

Dr. S. Y. Quraishi appointed Honorary Chair of Sightsavers

MUMBAI. Dr S. Y. Quraishi, former Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) of India, has been appointed as the Honorary Chair of the Board of Trustees for Sightsavers (India).

Picture Dr S Y Quraishi

Dr S. Y. Quraishi

Sightsavers is an international development organization based out of U.K with presence in more than 30 countries and works to eliminate avoidable blindness and for providing equal opportunity to persons with visual impairments.

Expressing delight at the new honour, Dr. Quraishi said, “I feel deeply honoured on being appointed the Chair of Sightsavers in India. It also bestows immense responsibilities on me by way of the commitment to the cause of eye healthcare and mitigation of visual impairment. I do look forward to working with the members of the Board and its team in India.”

Dr. Quraishi is known for his special contributions in social sector including health, education, population, drug abuse, and civil society action. He is also credited for his stellar work in the field of gender, women & child development, HIV/AIDS, youth and adolescent issues.

Commenting on Dr. Quraishi associating with Sightsavers, Mr. RN Mohanty, CEO of Sightsavers (India), said, “It is a great privilege for us to have Dr. Quraishi as our Chair. I am sure, his expertise and experience will immensely help Sightsavers in progressing towards the goal of eliminating avoidable blindness and providing equal opportunities for people with disabilities, across India.”

AMU felicitate GATE qualifiers

AMU VC addressing the felicitation programme

AMU VC addressing the felicitation programme

ALIGARH. The Department of Electronics Engineering, Aligarh Muslim University, felicitated the final year students on their excellent performance in the recently announced results of GATE-2013 exams. Among the top 50 positions countrywide in all disciplines of Engineering and Technology, Amit Chawla ranked second and Hameedah Sultan ranked 48. Both of them are from the department of Electronics Engineering.

In his presidential remarks, AMU Vice Chancellor, Lt. Gen (Retd.) Zameer Uddin Shah stressed the importance of sustained hard work and urged the students to appear in GATE as well as other national level exams and tests in greater number in the coming years.

Prof. Ekram Husain, Principal, Zakir Husain College of Engineering and Technology also addressed the gathering and highlighted the good performance by the students of Electronics Engineering.

Prof. M. Salim Beg, Chairman, Department of Electronics Engineering encouraged the students to come out with better performance in next year’s GATE examination.

Amit Chawla and Hameedah Sultan also spoke on the occasion and gave tips to crack the GATE exam.