The kind of challenges confronting Indian Muslims today are actually 'blessings in disguise' that will not only help the community but also spur the country to emerge stronger in future, said Haji Syed Salman Chishty, world-renowned Islamic and Sufi scholar
The kind of challenges confronting Indian Muslims today are actually 'blessings in disguise' that will not only help the community but also spur the country to emerge stronger in future, said Haji Syed Salman Chishty, world-renowned Islamic and Sufi scholar.
Salman Chishty, 38, who is the 26th Gaddi Nashin (direct descendent and Hereditary Custodian) of the globally revered tomb of Sultan-ul-Hind Hazrat Khawaja Moinuddin Hasan Chishty, the 11th century Sufi Saint, at Ajmer, Rajasthan, took time off his busy schedule to address the issues facing the Muslims and minorities in India.
According to Salman Chishty, Muslims world over face obstacles of different kinds arising out of their faith, but in India these issues are 'created' by vested interests and politically ambitious elements who revel in denigrating Muslims, Christians, Sikhs or even Dalits and "push them to the wall".
"I feel that is proving a blessing in disguiseï¿½ It is encouraging the Muslims and minorities to do better and excel in all spheres of life like academics, professions, politics to become more self-reliant instead of waiting for the doleï¿½ This is ultimately a part of the 'nation-building' process and will help the country prosper in future," Salman Chishty told IANS.
To the feeling of India having become an 'undeclared Hindu state', the Ajmer Sharif Dargah head dismissed any such suggestions, saying the Indian secular constitution cannot be overruled so easily.
"We have a strong Constitution. 'Religious Secularism' is the Soul of Indiaï. It has been practised only here since centuries, and just needs to be reinstated effectively in the current scenario. The antics of a handful of political leaders or a few television channels spreading communal venom cannot destroy it so easilyï¿½ We are a great nation and a robust democracy," Salman Chishty pointed out.
He lauded the manner in which prominent Hindu intellectuals, writers, journalists, enlightened political leaders and even "the people in your immediate neighbourhood" have fought and rejected attempts to segregate or marginalise Muslims and minorities.
He made it clear that 'nationalism' is not the sole monopoly of any single party or entity, since all Indians are 'true nationalists' who have worked together to build the great country for more than 1,400 years.
"That's why we were regarded as a 'Vishwa Guru' in the past, but not any longer as attempts are made to impose a certain viewpoint on all. India can never be a unidimensional entity, it will always remain multidimensional and lead the world by this example," Salman Chishty asserted.
An internationally renowned Islamic scholar and proponent of World Sufi Spiritual Traditions with special emphasis on the 'Chishty Sufi Order', Salman Chishty travels around the world addressing various global gatherings including the United Nations, top universities, multi-religious events, etc.