His Excellency, President of the Republic of Tatarstan & Chairman of the ‘Russia Islamic World’ – Strategic Vision Group – Mr Rustam Minnikhanov , His Excellency Mr Vladimir A. Vasileiev , Head of the Republic of Dagestan, honorable, distinguished guests and dignitaries from across the world, a very good evening/Moring and As-Salamu Alikum wa rahamtullah.
This is my honor & pleasure to reappear again this year as a member of the ‘Russia Islamic World – Strategic Vision Group’ and put forward my proposals and observation in the context of increased terrorist threats and security in the world.
I would also like to take this privilege to express my personal thanks and gratitude on behalf of my Sufi Islamic Party – Bangladesh Tariqat Federation (BTF) as well as Prime Minister of Bangladesh – honorable Sheikh Hasina to the Russian President – His Excellency Mr. Vladimir Putin who is a champion of Peace and who’s promoting peace across the world at the moment.
Distinguished guests and fellow members of the Russia Islamic World:
We are living dangerously in a bad patch of time, the whole of Middle East is on fire, and most capitals of the earth are under terrorist threats which has no shape, no color, no religion and no creed. Western powers are giving proxy wars , drums of nuclear war are bitten by some quarters and if ignited, the human race will be perished from the face of this earth. We – the members of the Russia Islamic World are dead against all kinds of extremism and our fight against this terror will remain continued. The hydra of terrorism has now spread from Damascus to Bagdad, from Jakarta to Islamabad, from Mumbai to Manchester – nobody is safe . Terrorism – sometimes have taken color of religion, some in the name of democracy and freedom. But are they fighting for the truth? Are they fighting for peace or humanity? The answer is a big NO.
Today, we know – who are creating unrest, who are creating terrorism in the name of peace & religion? The youths and young minds are being brain-washed, extremism – taking away their innocence and sending them to the war front with rifles in hands and bombs fasten around their waist. The bigots sending them to kill millions of innocent, helpless children, men and women in Asia, Africa or in Europe and rest of the world. But Why? Where all those ideologies, love and compassion have gone? Where are those priests, monks, Maulanas , Islamic scholars, secular minds and wise stalwarts of the world and I invite them to stand here and say to the human race – yes, you are doing a great mistake by creating mistrust, misdeeds and mis-information . Killing won’t bring you any peace, war won’t bring you any peace, and division won’t bring you any peace.
- Calming your guns will make peace
- Resisting hatred will bring you peace
- Stopping hate message will bring you peace
- Right Education will bring you peace
- Right interpretation of your holy books will bring you peace
- Right information will bring you peace
- Forgetting differences will bring you peace
- Equal rights will bring you peace
- Division of wealth and labor will bring you peace
- Talking to each other sitting across the table will bring you peace
- Love of each other will bring you peace
More than half of the population is youth around the world. Let’s not corrupt their minds with hate speech, hatred and hell-fire of religious jingoism. Let us educate them with right information, let them grow with compassion for each other, let us teach them how to love one another as human beings.
Bangladesh Tariqat Federation – My Sufi Islamic party is doing this tough job in sync with Govt. Of Bangladesh under the leadership of Prime Minster Sheikh Hasina. We are involving youths , Imams of mosques, Schools and madrashas in every walks life to be patient and maintain religious harmony thereby keeping space for others to maintain their respective religions with peace and harmony . I would like to recall the measures that have been taken in our country under the leadership of our Prime Minister – Sheikh Hasina which I feel worth sharing in this forum and could be used as ‘best practice’ for all :
(1) Training of Imams of all mosques across the country under the guidance of ‘Islamic Foundation’ – a Govt. sponsored agency on religious affairs who took the onus to implement ‘Khutba on every Jumma ( Friday congregation ) prayer which would emphasis on anti-terrorism, resist against hate speech etc.
(2) Review Syllabus in kindergarten, schools, colleges & universities : incorporating subject on anti-terrorism , religious harmony and peace. Most kids from affluent society were hand-picked and brain-washed to chose Jihadi path by the Terrorist group in the past.
(3) Quami Madrasha ( which weren’t under the folds of Govt. of Bangladesh but has large body of students) is being assisted by Govt. and recently , the Govt. has recognized and allaigned their highest degree with that of general education and along side Aliya Madrasha which are Govt. run institutions.
(4) Publications of booklets, literature in the light of Holy Quran and Sunnah and distribute them among youths through NGOs and various Govt. Channels.
To sustain development in terms of economic trade, tourism, exchange of cultural programs we must have a common view of a tolerant society and chalk out an Action Plan to fight against terrorism effectively keeping ‘youths’ in the center.
Since we all know that youths are the future of the world and also how the demography of the youths’ behavioral and civic education will pave the way towards prosperous , inclusive and tolerant world. Currently, as we are observing a faction of young generation being derailed , brain-washed and used as a tool against Islam & humanity as a whole falsely using the name of Islam .
Here goes my proposal in ordr to improve the effectiveness of joint work in the field of Youth policy & education :
Social Media : The world now-a-days connected through internet & various social media. It is the fastest way to collect any information / knowledge and interaction with people worldwide which s just a click away. The social media / internet is now being wrongly used by the hardliners with ill motive by people and terrorist alike. Unfortunately, whereas this internet or social media could have been the key tool in spreading peace and tolerance in the society – it is, regrettably, doing the opposite. Why so?
The internet / social media space is not the bad element here, rather , the ignorance & willingness in promoting the right message is the key problem. We as a whole , has to unite not only to protect the internet space but also create awareness, built-in knowledge, counter methodology and promoting the right message through social media & balance use of internet must be taken with highest consideration by all nations to protect the ‘youth’ of the world.
Mental Health : Although mental health issue is not taken seriously but that shows – the mental health plays a vital role in building up the psychology of a youth. We’ve come to know through various report that a lot of youngsters turning into terrorism – has to do with mental issues such as, Depression, Anxiety, Stress, Lack of Social acceptance, Parental and peer pressure , educational pressure etc. plays a significant role for the state of mind of the youth which are being grabbed by the terrorist organization in converting them to make one of them. We need to focus on helping our youths to have a healthy brain which could be attained if the following sectors are being made more youth-friendly, less stressful and diversified . Such as,
a/ Education system : Making education system more to do with ‘learning experience’ rather than ‘grade’ itself.
b/ Sports : Sports brings ‘physical activation’ in the form of body-movement which helps not only to be fit physically but mentally as well.
c/ Economic & cultural activation : If youth is being assisted in the field of cultural & economic , it would help them to socialize , learn and be a part of the society thus giving them a ‘sense of belonging’.
If we all work unitedly in all of these above mentioned field – in giving our youth the chance of growing strong, patriotic and a noble person, it is necessary to address all of these points collectively.
Last but not the least, Islam is the religion of peace & tolerance. Islam has taught us how to be ‘compassionate’ to each other, how to love each-other & how to help each other. One of the pillars of Islam is called – ‘Zakat’ – which means giving, to share some portion of your wealth & fortune to the needy and poor and help those luckless people to improve their lives. From this, it can be said that helping people in general, feeding the starved, standing by a person when s/he needs help – all of these are of part of prayers and acceptance from Allah SWT. The prophet Mohammad (Sw) has also given us the “ Charter of Madina” – the first constitution of the world written down by the prophet as to how to live peacefully with other people of faith apart from the Muslims as well.
My dear friends what I’m trying to say – the main problem of the world specially, in dealing with terrorism , hardliners is that we’ve gone far away from the teachings of Islam. If we come back to the teachings of Islam and if we promote Islam unitedly then, Peace, Prosperity and Inclusiveness will come back to the society. Also if we unitedly promote the real / true Islam , the enemies of Islam who’re using the name of Islam to preach – ‘hatred’ and ‘create anarchy’ will lose the battle as truth – which is Islam will prevail over falsehood.
In view of the above, I also reiterate the following points to consider :
1/ To formulate a high-power cell/group/ committee involving religious leaders/scholars/think-tank from across nations/states who will be responsible to propagate the ‘Universal Truth’ ( of Love each-other, Live with one-another, truthfulness, compassion and humanity – because all religion share the same values on it) and include the same in the syllabi of primary and secondary . Now time has come to implement this from grassroots in order to educate our young men.
2/ They ‘core group’ will be given a year-planner to set meeting/workshops/summit addressing the on-going crisis.
3/ Moral teachings from Islam to be collected and collated and put in the syllabi of schools.
4/ Exchange programs for youths – could give some insight to stop terrorism across the globe.
I would finish off my speech with the saying of a ‘sufi saint’ – Hazrat Gausul Azam Ab-dal Quadir al-zilani & I quote :
“ To find Peace, Come to Islam
To promote peace, come to Islam
To find humanity, love & compassion
Come to the path of Islam.”
‘Do not spend even one night in the hate & malice of anybody’…
I would like to endorse my vote of thanks to the Chair – The President of Republic of Tatarstan, the Head of the Republic of Dagestan and the Chief Coordinator of the Group Strategic vision – Russia-Islamic world Ambassador Mr. Veniamin Popov for arranging such a wonderful summit and last but not the least, I would like to express my heartfelt thanks to his Excellency Mr Vladimir Putin, President of the Russian Federation for his bold step to bring peace to the world.
As salamu alikum wa rahamatullah.
Alhaj Syed Nazibul Bashar Maizvandary
Member of Parliament
Bangladesh Tariqat Federation (BTF)