Speakers at a webinar here underlined the role mosques, prayer leaders and religious scholars can play in promoting tolerance, peaceful coexistence, interfaith as well as inter-sect harmony and inclusiveness in the society in these challenging times. Under the Paigham-e-Pakistan initiative of the government of Pakistan, a plan had been chalked out to take onboard the imams and khateebs of different schools of religious thought in the mission of spreading the message of peace, unity and harmony in the country from the pulpit. Under the initiative, an awareness campaign had been launched from Faisalabad, and four different awareness sessions have already been organized in Faisalabad, Chiniot, Jhang and Toba Tek Singh.
Taking forward the initiative, a webinar titled ‘Mimber-o-Mihrab: Role of Mosques, Madaris and Ulema in Peacebuilding’ was organized by Madrassah Tadrees-ul-Quran Karak in collaboration with University of Science and Technology, Kohat, and Paigham-e-Pakistan. Dr Qaiser Bilal from Department of Islamic Education, University of Science and Technology, Kohat, Maulana Akhtar Zaman, Mufti Abdur Raheem, Maulana Farmanullah, Hafiz Abdullah, Qari Basit Khattak, Asmatullah, Adil Jaan, Muhammad Ziaullah from Saudi Arabia and Nasir Ahmed Arif from Sweden were prominent among those who participated in the virtual session.
In his address, Hafiz Abdullah highlighted the role ulema can play in spreading the message of peace and harmony to every nook and corner through pulpit, as well as countering the extremist ideologies which encourage violence and terrorism in the society in the name of Islam. He urged the ulema to exhibit best moral character and spread the message of peace through their sermons.
Dr Qaiser Bilal threw light on Paigham-e-Pakistan decree endorsed by 5,000 ulema of all schools of thought. He said the narrative teaches peace, harmony and unity among different sects. He said the virus of extremism is more dangerous than coronavirus. He said every effort should be made to uproot the virus of extremism and terrorism from the society. He said the country is currently passing through a very difficult time and that everyone should acknowledge his duties toward the nation and the country and play his part to overcome this unprecedented challenge.
He said the religious clerics and ulema also have a huge role to play in this situation. He said people and the government have to wage a joint war against coronavirus pandemic, adding that adopting preventive measures as advised by medical experts is a must to defeat the monster of coronavirus. Dr Qaiser Bilal said the terrorist organizations are trying to use coronavirus crisis for their vested interests. He said amid lockdown and closure of offices and businesses, people spend most of their time on internet these days. He said the terrorist organizations are spreading negative propaganda on social media, which has become a cybersecurity challenge for Pakistan.