Sir Syed Day celebrated in Maharashtra

THE 195th birth anniversary of the revolutionary Muslim leader and scholar, Sir Syed Ahmad Khan, was recently celebrated in Mumbai.

The Aligarh Muslim University Alumni Association (AMUAA) of Maharashtra held their annual Sir Syed Day event at Alkesh Dinesh Modi Hall, Mumbai University on October 17, 2012.

Kuldeep Nayar, an eminent Journalist, was the Chief Guest on the accassion. He emphasised on the role of Sir Syed Ahmed Khan in revolutionising Education. He called on Muslims of India to wake up and don’t consider themselves as minority, “There is no minority or Majority in the country, India belongs to all who live here.” He was of the opinion that Indian Muslims can become a force to reckon with if they take up education seriously. Continue reading “Sir Syed Day celebrated in Maharashtra”

The Sir Syed model of Muslim empowerment

THE name Sir Syed Ahmad Khan evokes considerable respect from people in India, especially Muslims on either side of the border. A man of vision, he thought of progressive Muslim education on a scale rarely attempted earlier and against formidable odds. It is important to understand what drove him to bring in modern education as a savior of Muslims.

The Prophet of Islam [PBUH] said, “There are two persons that one is permitted to envy: The one to whom God has given riches and who has the courage to spend it in search for truth; the other to whom God has given knowledge and wisdom and who applies it for the benefit of mankind and shares it with his fellows.” Sir Syed belong to the second group. Continue reading “The Sir Syed model of Muslim empowerment”

Giving them wings to fly

THE Flying Birds Group established in early 2005 at AJK Mass Communication Research Centre, Jamia Millia Islamia, has been trying to empower the youth of economically, socially and educationally backward areas of Delhi by teaching and promoting innovative use of new media tools and technologies.

Young women members of the group have been producing short documentary films on real life issues affecting them, such as girl child discrimination, need for adequate health care and education, eve-teasing, domestic violence, and changing gender roles. Most recently, they made films highlighting the need to conserve art and cultural heritage at various levels of society. Continue reading “Giving them wings to fly”

Seminar highlights challenges facing Indian muslims empowerment

AAGHAZ Foundation, a community-driven organisation working to eradicate illiteracy among Indian Muslim, organised a seminar on ‘Education and Empowerment Challenges Facing Indian Muslims and the Way Forward’ at Lucknow on September 16th. Academicians, muslim clerics, scientists, professionals, and businessmen turned up for the event at Umanath Bali’s J.S. Prasad auditorium. Maulana Saed-Ur-Rahman Azmi, Principal of Darul Uloom Nadwatul Ulema, was the chief guest.

The President of the foundation and Dubai-based journalist, Mazhar Farooqui, made a power point presentation on the educational and economic status of Muslims in India.  He gave an overview of Aaghaz Foundation’s zero-expense model and its efforts in rooting out illiteracy from the community. Continue reading “Seminar highlights challenges facing Indian muslims empowerment”

Aligarh movement to be revived

A MEETING was organised by Aligarh Muslim University Alumni Association of Maharashtra (AMUAAM) on July 15, 2012, in Mumbai, to discuss the revival of ‘Aligarh Movement’, State’s lukewarm response to AMU Campus in Aurangabad, building of ‘Syed House’ in Mumbai and other pertinent issues.

The former Vice Chancellor, P.K. Abdul Aziz, with a direction from central government had decided to open five campuses of AMU in different parts of India, and Maharashtra was one of them. The site had been finalised by the university officials a long time back and the indication of the same had been forwarded to the state government to allot the site to University. The state government has so far shown no interest in expediting the process because of which campus construction has yet to start. AMUAAM  has decided to put this issue on its lists of priority and to take it up with the state government. A committee has been formed to address the same. Continue reading “Aligarh movement to be revived”

More than 30,000 scholorships awarded to Muslims

THE Ministry of Minority Affairs has awarded 42,476 Merit-cum-means Scholarships during 2011-12. Of these 32,723 scholarships went to students belonging to the Muslim community. For this the Ministry sanctioned Rs. 1.16 billion during 2011-12. For 2012-13 the budgetary provision for this scheme has been increased to Rs. 2.2 billion and the physical target has also been increased to 80,000 scholarships.

Merit-cum-means scholarship scheme of the Ministry of Minority Affairs is meant for the students belonging to the Minority communities studying in technical and professional courses.

“Government has forgotten the communal violence bill”

DR ASGHAR Ali Engineer is a reformist-writer and activist. He is known for his work on liberation theology in Islam. He is also a leading voice against communalism in India and South Asia. In an exclusive interview with Ali Hasan, Dr Engineer speaks at length about the issues affecting Indian Muslims.

MT: How do you see the progress of Indian Muslims during the last 20 years?

AA: Though there is some progress in last 20 years but it is far from satisfactory. Muslims are 15 per cent of India’s population and yet nothing more than a mass of ignorant and illiterate people. They are bringing in more money from the Gulf countries than the Christians do from western countries. Whereas Christians are successfully running and controlling educational institutions, Muslims have not improved their literacy by even one percent.

Our leaders, too, hardly do anything to address these problems. Continue reading ““Government has forgotten the communal violence bill””

Scholarships galore for minority students

THE months of June and July are probably two months of the year in which most of the government scholarships for minority students open. It happens year after year, and yet, the percentage of Muslim students applying for it increases by a fraction compared to the scholarships available. The Government of India, in the past five years has more than doubled the scholarships after Justice Sacchar Committee report.

Mass awareness of the various scholarship schemes is the need of the hour for our community. Lots of parent and students worry as they seem to apply but don’t receive any funds. Some just blame the system and that the babus in the Minority Department demand “suvidha shulk” to process the scholarship.

But there is a way out! Students can apply for scholarships online. Once they submit the various documents online and get a application Id generated, then no one can stop them from getting one.  And those who come across “suvidha shulk” problem can contact me, and we will do something together.

I have compiled details of various government scholarship schemes available to the students (from Class 1 to College):

a. For Post Matric Scholarship –  http://momascholarship.gov.in/postmatric/

b. Merit – Cum – Means Scholarship – http://momascholarship.gov.in/minority_scholarship/

c. Pre – Matric Scholarship – http://www.minorityaffairs.gov.in/prematric
(Download the Application form and then apply)

d.  Free Coaching Tuition Assistance – http://www.minorityaffairs.gov.in/free_coachin

e. Government Order Copy to the UP State Government: http://minoritywelfare.up.nic.in/2012-13/post/post%20matric%20online.pdf

(Ajaz Farooqui is part of a charity trust which works for the upliftment of Muslim minorities in India)