Inter Faith Harmony Foundation of India, a forum for inter faith and inter civilization dialogue floated by Indian Muslims, today on 31st of January, 2006 formally launched the beginning of the National Series of Inter Faith Dialogue by organizing an Inter Faith Meet at the auditorium of India International Centre, New Delhi. On this occasion while delivering the Welcome address the President of the Foundation Dr. Khwaja Iftikhar Ahmed announced the formation of Moulana Jalaluddin Roomi International University of World Religions in India, a university which shall provide a comprehensive package of courses covering all the major religions of the world. This university will be developed as a Major International Centre for the promotion of inter faith dialogue at the national and international level in between Religious Scholars, Spiritual Masters, Eminent Academicians and Politicians representing different denominations. The Foundation shall announce the name of the first Chancellor of the university in the next conference of the series which is scheduled for April 2006. A committee to work out other modalities of the proposed university is being constituted in which prominent faces having strong connectivity to religion, spirituality and education shall find representation. HonourableUnion Minister of Chemicals & Fertilizers and Steel Mr. Ram Vilas Paswan was the Chief guest and Honourable Chairman, National Commission for Minorities Sardar Tralochan Singh was the Guest of Honour present on this occasion. His Holiness Swami Agnivesh chaired the proceedings.
The key speakers representing Baha'I Faith, Christianity, Islam and Sikhism were Mr. Shatrughan Jingvani a noted Baha'I Scholar, Dr. M. D. Thomas, National Director, Commission for Inter Religious Dialogue, C. B. C. I. and Mr. Hamid Hussain, a Seasoned Muslim Bureaucrat. All of them put the viewpoint of their faith on the concept of peaceful co-existence in world religions and their views were identical on the subject. Other faiths shall find the audience in the next two series, tentatively planned for April and August, 2006.
All the speakers were of the view that this is high time to promote inter faith dialogue both at the national and global level. The initiative of the Foundation to take a lead in this direction was welcome by one and all. The idea to set up an international university after the name of Moulana Rumi was not only appreciated by Swami Agnivesh, Mr. Paswan, Dr. Chandrasekhar, Mr. Khuntia, distinguished speakers and the present audience but all of them assured of their moral and material cooperation in realizing this noble objective.
While addressing the audience Swami Agnivesh said that the inbuilt tolerance and harmony in Indian society is our biggest asset and we should remain united in preserving it. Mr. Paswan said that it is high time to highlight Sufism which is the true face of Islam and in doing so this university will play a major role. Dr. M. D. Thomas while applauding the initiative of the Foundation said that what can be a better place to set up this university than India. He said this university shall bring closer two major civilizations of the world i.e. India and Turkey. Mr. Tralochan Singh said that setting up this university in India will be the best tribute to Indian Secularism. Dr. Khwaja, President, IFHFI emphasized on the world Muslims to come forward and play a more active role in projecting the correct image of Islam which of course is the image of peace, tolerance and harmony. The proceedings were conducted by Fainan Ahmed Khwaja, a young inter faith activist, initial welcome to the delegates was given by the Joint Secretary of the Foundation Mr.Hafeez-ur-Rehman and vote of thanks was given by Professor Qazi Obaid-ur-Rehman Hashmi, General Secretary of the foundation.