Federal Minister for Planning and Development Ahsan Iqbal on Thursday said that Muslims were undoubtedly facing a prejudice in the form of Islamophobia and the solution to this lies in knowledge and wisdom.
He was speaking at a two-day international conference on the topic of “Islamophobia & its impact on relations between Islamic & Western civilizations” held at the International Islamic University. The conference is organized by Islamic Research Institute (IRI) in collaborations with Muslim World League, Makkah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Faculty of Shariah and Law and Faculty of Usuluddin of IIUI.
The minister also held that the real cause of extremism was prejudice because terming it a virus that destroys human rationale.
Meanwhile, commenting on the cause of ‘Islampophia,’ Ahsan Iqbal said that it was related to bigotry, which should be countered strategically instead of a conspiracy theory. He said that knowledge and wisdom were the only ways that provide complete solutions to problems.
Referring to the teachings of the Prophet (PBUH), he said that the principles of Holy Quran and teachings that derive lessons from the life of Holy Prophet (PBUH) were a permanent and complete guarantee of peace. Ahsan Iqbal said that the answer to hatred is not respond with hate because it was against the Islamic teachings and wherever it was practiced in the world it had led to destruction.
He said that peaceful coexistence was missing nowadays, the root of extremism and religious hatred was prejudice because it was a negative attitude that prevents speaking the truth.
Making social development a topic, he said that the secret of success lies in collectivity because a divided society can never progress. there is a need to adopt an attitude of tolerance towards each other, we need to live peacefully together and learn the manners of disagreement. International Islamic University Rector Dr. Masoom Yasinzai expressed gratitude to Ahsan Iqbal for his special interest in the development of the university and hailed his important role in the completion of PC One of IIUI.
He expressed hope that this conference would be a platform for important proposals in resolving the biggest problem of our time, Islamophobia. IIUI President Dr. Hathal Homoud Alotaibi said that more than 100 articles would be presented in this conference, which would be proven as important milestone in bringing forth important proposals regarding the remedy of Islamophobia.
He said that prevailing misunderstandings against Islam and Muslims must be addressed through research and a coordinated plan of action.
President IIUI said that Islam and its teachings of peaceful coexistence were the solution to instability across the world. He also highlighted the scope of Islamic University’s constituent units and their services to Muslim societies.
He said that a strategic plan has been prepared for the development of the university, under which the work of making the university a top institution of high quality has started. He said Islamophobia is the factor behind creating gap between Muslim world and west and spread of hatred.
He opined that research and education at the universities of Muslim world is the ultimate solution to the menace of Islamophobia.
Earlier, Dr Muhammad Zia ul Haq while describing the objectives of the conference said that IIUI is making efforts for social reconstruction of Islamic world. In the light of strategic plan the conference has been organized to bring researchers and experts to address the core issues of the hour.
It is pertinent to mention here that Muslim World League (MWL) chief Mohammed bin Abdul Karim Al-Issa shall address the concluding ceremony of the conference as well as he will also lead the Juma prayer at Faisal Masjid.