Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the World Sufi Forum in New Delhi yesterday. The Forum was convened by the All India Ulama and Mashaikh Board to discuss the role of Sufiism in countering rising global terror.
The Forum debated long-term alternatives to counter rising issues of radicalisation and use of terror in the name of religion. The Forum emphasised and reasserted India's position as one of the global centres for moderate ideology in Islam.
It is a four day event and it will be attended by several delegates, including foreign delegates from 20 countries. Spiritual leaders, scholars, academicians and theologists from Egypt, Jordan, Turkey, UK, US, Canada and Pakistan among other countries are to be present for the event.
Prime Minister welcomed with 'Bharat Mata Ki Jai':
When Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived to address World Sufi Forum he was welcomed with shouts of 'Bharat Mata Ki Jai'. The shouts were heard repeatedly as he talked to the elite crowd gathered.
Some quotable quotes from PM Modi's speech are:
"At a time when the dark shadow of violence is becoming longer, you are the noor."
"When young laughter is silenced by guns on the streets, you are the voice that heals."
"For the Sufis, service to God meant service to humanity."
"Sufism is a celebration of diversity and pluralism."
"Sufism is the voice of peace, co-existence, compassion and equality."
"Sufism blossomed in India's openness and pluralism."
"Sufism helped shape a distinct Islamic heritage of India."
"Sufism's contribution to poetry in India is huge."
"All our people, Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs, Christians, Jains, Buddhists, micro-minority of Parsis, believers, non-believers, are integral part of India."
"Terrorism and extremism have become the most destructive force of our times."
"The fight against terrorism is a struggle between the values of humanism and the forces of inhumanity."
Prime Minister on separating Religion and Terrorism:
Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his speech categorically said that, "The fight against terrorism is not a confrontation against any religion. It cannot be."
He also added that, "It is also a battle that must be won through the strength of our values and the real message of religions. As I have said before, we must reject any link between terrorism and religion. Those who spread terror in the name of religion are anti-religious."
PM Modi further created word picture of sorrow that terrorism spreads when he said that, "Each day brings us terrible news and horrifying images; of schools turned into graveyards of innocence; of prayer gatherings turned into funeral processions, of call to prayer or Azaan drowned by the sound of explosion; of blood on the beach, massacres in malls and smouldering cars on streets; of thriving cities ruined and priceless heritage destroyed; and, of parents bearing coffins, entire communities dislocated, millions displaced, and refugees caught between fire and stormy seas."
How Prime Minister praised India:
Prime Minister Narendra Modi praised India by calling it land that is a timeless fountain of peace, and an ancient source of traditions and faiths, which has received and nurtured religions from the world.
He further added in praise of India that, "Welcome to a people with an abiding belief in Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam, the World is one family."
Sufi greats PM Narendra Modi quoted:
Prime Minister Narendra Modi quoted Persian Sufi poet Saadi; Sufi saints Mehboob-e-Ilahi and Hazrat Bakhtiyar Kaki; Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya; Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti; Bulleh Shah; Baba Farid; Amir Khusrau; Maulana Hussain Madani; and Jalaluddin Rumi among others.