Indian Muslims feel insecure under Modi

Updated 11 June 2014
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Indian Muslims feel insecure under Modi

A visiting youth activist from the Indian subcontinent said here on Tuesday that there is a strong feeling of insecurity among the Muslim community in India under the premiership of Narendra Modi.
Aloor Shanavas from Tamil Nadu, a well-known script writer and prominent activist in India, expressed these sentiments to Arab News during his visit to Riyadh.
Shanavas has written six books and directed three film documentaries to highlight the social problems in the country.
The events of 1990s — anti-Muslim violence such as the destruction of the Babri Masjid and the Mumbai riots, the anti-dalit violence mainly in Kodiyankulam and Thinniyam, and atrocities like burning alive of a Christian priest and his young children — greatly affected Shanavas. He realized the importance of fighting for the cause of minority communities and the oppressed and marginalized people. He became the voice of the voiceless through his writings, speeches and the visual media.
His compilation of poems entitled ‘Thottaakkal,’ dealing with the Gujarat genocide 2002, spread huge shockwaves in the Tamil milieu. Shanawaz has participated in a lot of programs in several TV channels from 2003 to 2006.
After the reports of committees headed by Justice Sachar and Justice Ranganath Misra, whose findings showed that Indian Muslims lagged behind even the Dalits in the fields of employment and power — were released, Shanavas directed and released a full-length documentary ‘Pirappurimi’ (birth right) highlighting the need for special reservation for Muslims. At a function held in Chennai on May 27, 2006 Parithi Ilamvazhudhi, the then Minister for Information released the documentary.
“Our Muslims have still not forgotten the massacre of their brethren in Gujarat for which Modi was largely responsible. Nearly 2,000 Muslims were killed in this genocide,” he said, adding that is the reason they are in a dilemma as to what will become of the community following Modi’s premiership.
However, he added that there can be a change in Modi’s attitude after the premiership. “It is yet to be seen,” he added.
He lamented as to why the voice of this massacre of Muslims in Gujarat was not heard. He stressed that the Muslim lobbying was not as strong as the propaganda for the killers. He said the Indian Muslims youths have a greater role to voice their opinion on matters affecting their community.
Although Modi won the majority of electoral seats in the last elections, only 30 percent of the voters were for him while the remaining 70 percent was against him.
He propagated the idea of Muslims co-existing peacefully with other communities in India. But he insisted that Muslims should be given their share in the government’s allocation of jobs and other facilities entitled for the minority community.
Shanavas has traveled to Sri Lanka, Qatar, Malaysia, Kuwait and Penang and addressed literary and social seminars. On Friday, he is slated to address his community members in a city hotel in the capital.


Crown prince award ‘will build Saudi-Sino cultural bridges’

Updated 38 min 46 sec ago
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Crown prince award ‘will build Saudi-Sino cultural bridges’

ARAB NEWS BEIJING: Leading academics and literary talents from Saudi Arabia and China will be honored under an award scheme sponsored by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Culture Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Farhan announced the Prince Mohammed bin Salman Award for Cultural Cooperation between the Kingdom and China during a visit to King Abdul Aziz Public Library at Peking University in Beijing on Thursday.
The announcement was made on the eve of the Saudi crown prince’s visit to China, the latest stop on an Asian tour.
The cultural cooperation award will honor leading academics, translators and high-achievers from the Kingdom and China in the categories: Best scientific research in Arabic, best artistic work, best Chinese-Arabic book translation and vice versa, person of the year, and most influential person of the year in the cultural milieu.
Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Farhan said: “This partnership is in the name of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and represents the common commitment to build cultural bridges between the two countries, developing cultural exchange, and promoting artistic and academic opportunities for our citizens.”
He said the yearly award will promote language, literature, and Arabic and creative arts in China, and encourage cultural exchange.
The Kingdom and China have a long history of cultural cooperation, including the annual Arabic Arts Festival.
The King Abdul Aziz Public Library at Peking University was inaugurated in 2017 during King Salman’s official visit to China, where he received an honorary doctorate degree.