Indian Muslims’ Growth Rate Drops Sharply

Muslims at Jama Masjid, New DelhiAmidst the usual interest and misrepresentation of facts related to Indian Muslims’ population, the following figures tell a different story altogether.

As per the latest Census of India (2011) the Growth Rate of Indian Muslims have gone down sharply from 29.52% (2001 Census) to 24.60%. The areas with the highest literacy in India are the state Kerala (93.91%) and the Union Territory (UT) Lakshadweep (91.85%). It’s interesting to note that Kerala’s Muslims account for 26.56% of the total population, in Lakshadweep they are in absolute majority at 96.58%. Incidentally Kerala also has the Best Sex Ratio (1084 females per 1000 males). Continue reading “Indian Muslims’ Growth Rate Drops Sharply”

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.” Continue reading “Kalam – The Legacy Lives On”

A root problem needs a root answer

Girls outside a school in IndiaEducation comes in many forms when experience is your teacher. I recall the day when I was part of a delegation to some muscular regional satrap. There was only one point on our agenda: the extent, quality and depth of education among minorities, with a stress on how to do far more for the Muslim girl child. A worthy cause brought together a worthy lot: an assortment of editors, educationists, NGO heads, marginal do-gooders. We sat in the room adjacent to the satrap’s office with beatific smiles on our faces. After the compulsory wait, we entered his sanctum in a solemn file.
Continue reading “A root problem needs a root answer”

“There’s nothing called a homogeneous Indian Muslim politically”

MJ AKBAR is a prolific Indian author and journalist. His most recent book is ‘Tinderbox: The past and future of Pakistan’. In an exclusive interview with Inam Abidi Amrohvi, Muslims Today, Akbar speaks on issues that plague the Indian Muslims.

M J Akbar
M J Akbar

Education has been the bane of Indian Muslims. Has the situation improved both in terms of the infrastructure and mindset?

Yes, and I feel education begins with the mindset. I noticed this in the 1990s, after the high tension of the Babri Masjid episode. I think there was a very strong sense, within the Muslim community of India, of having being let down by politicians who created a hype which led to a high spurt of emotionalism. The community in particular felt abandoned mainly after the Congress government promised to protect the mosque and then quietly went to sleep on the day of the demolition.

I feel there come crisis points in the lives of people which wakes them up. There was a crisis point for example, in 1991, when the economy was hit in India. Similarly, the mosque demolition, too, made Indian Muslims realise that the future lay not in the politics of manipulation (what we have seen being done by those who seek Muslim votes) but in the basics, which is education, from education the economic empowerment. Education is the primary means of economic empowerment. The opportunity base in India is huge.

One of the more important things I see in all the investments of the community, is the education of the girl child. We are already seeing the change in rising literacy levels and the economic opportunities created as a consequence of these investments of the last 20 years.

There is a lot of related infrastructure development all over the country. Education is the biggest growth industry in India. Continue reading ““There’s nothing called a homogeneous Indian Muslim politically””

A pioneering educational initiative for the Muslim minority

GUWAHATI. The American Federation of Muslims of Indian Origin (AFMI) will hold its 22nd International Convention on Education and Gala Award Program on Dec 28-29, 2013 in Guwahati in association with Markazul Ma’arif (a voluntary social-welfare NGO) and Ajmal Foundation.

Muslim toppers from each state will be honored at the convention.

In addition, the convention will also feature sessions on various aspects of education and these will be addressed by experts in the field. A special session will be dedicated on the challenges and prospects facing Muslim education in the North East. Another session will focus on educating the girl child.

AFMI is a philanthropic, service based and issue-orientated organisation formed by Muslim Americans of Indian origin in 1989. It strives to work towards the educational and economic upliftment of Indian Muslims by seeking cooperation among American and Indian relief and educational organisations.

The organisation which strives to achieve 100 per cent literacy among Indian Muslims has already built and adopted schools in many villages, and also provides prizes and scholarship to needy and deserving students.

Other than education AFMI has also built hospitals, conducted medical camps, provided relief and rehabilitation during epidemics and calamities.

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

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. Continue reading “Books on Sir Syed released”

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.

Muslim conference on the 12th Plan

Muslim Conference on the 12th Plan
Muslim Conference on the 12th Plan

Lucknow. A national conference, “Unpacking the 12th Plan”, was held on the 17th of March. The conference was an effort to understand as to why goverment initiated welfare schemes do not reach out to the masses, and to find a way out so that the objectives of the schemes are truly realised. It was presided over by Dr Maulana Saeed-ur-Rehman Azmi Nadvi. Also present on the occassion were  Salman Khurshid, External Affairs Minister, Pallam Raju, Minister for HRD,  and Mrs Sayeda Hameed, Member of Planning Commission. Continue reading “Muslim conference on the 12th Plan”

The Career Fest 2012 to be held next month

THE Association of Muslim Professionals (AMP) is organising yet another edition of the ‘The Career Fest’.  The main event is to be held on the 15th and 16th of December, 2012. The Fest seeks to bridge the gap between the professionals in society and the young brilliance who look up for guidance from them.

The AMP is a platform for all Muslim professionals, and volunteers to share their knowledge, intellect, experience and skills for the overall development of not just the Muslim Community but the society at large.

Organised by AMP and supported by many social and educational organisations in Mumbai, the Career Fest was first organised in 2009. The Fest attracted more than 20,000 visitors in 2011. This year workshops and lectures will be organised for students in prominent colleges of the city divided in 7 different zones. Special workshops will also be conducted for teachers in different zones over the entire week. The event will feature more than a 100 high profile speakers and participation from more than 150 schools in Mumbai. A host of competitions have already started for students, teachers and parents, as part of the event.

The organisers claim the event to be the biggest in India in the educational sector.

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