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99 names of Allah, none stands for violence: PM Modi at World Sufi Forum

Praising Islam For Its Message Of Peace And Harmony, Prime Minister Narendra Modi Today Said None Of Allah’s 99 Names Stands For Violence And Asserted The Fight Against Terrorism Is Not A Confrontation Against Any Religion And The Two Should Be Delinked.

PTI | Updated on: 17 Mar 2016, 11:33:38 PM

New Delhi:

Praising Islam for its message of peace and harmony, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said none of Allah’s 99 names stands for violence and asserted the fight against terrorism is not a confrontation against any religion and the two should be delinked.

Addressing the first World Sufi Forum, he said, “This is an extraordinary event of great importance to the world, at a critical time for humanity. At a time when the dark shadow of violence is becoming longer, you are the noor, or the light of hope. When young laughter is silenced by guns on the streets, you are the voice that heals.”

Emphasising advancing of the message of Sufism that stands for the principles of Islam and the highest human values, he chose the occasion to stress that the fight against terrorism is not a confrontation against any religion.

“The fight against terrorism is not a confrontation against any religion. It cannot be. It is a struggle between the values of humanism and the forces of inhumanity. It is not a conflict to be fought only through military, intelligence or diplomatic means.

“It is also a battle that must be won through the strength of our values and the real message of religions. As I have said before, we must reject any link between terrorism and religion. Those who spread terror in the name of religion are anti-religious,” he said.

Terming Sufism, a spiritual quest that traces its origin from the Holy Prophet and the fundamental values of Islam, which literally means peace, Modi said, “And, it reminds us that when we think of the 99 names of Allah, none stand for force and violence, and that the first two names denote compassionate and merciful. Allah is Rahman and Raheem.”

Earlier Modi was welcomed with the chant of ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai’ at the forum convened by the All India Ulama and Mashaikh Board, to discuss the role of Sufism in countering rising global terror.

Modi’s message came at a time when his government has been facing Opposition flak on the issue of communalism and amid a raging debate on nationalism.

The four-day event, beginning today is being attended by over 200 delegates, including foreign delegates from 20 countries.

Spiritual leaders, scholars, academicians and theologists from Egypt, Jordan, Turkey, the UK, the US, Canada and Pakistan, among other countries are coming for the event.

During his around 30-minute speech, Modi quoted a number of Sufi scholars to drive home the message of unity of mankind preached by all religions.

“When the spiritual love of Sufism, not the violent force of terrorism, flows across the border, this region will be the paradise on earth that Amir Khusrau spoke about... Terrorism divides and destroys us.

“Indeed, when terrorism and extremism have become the most destructive force of our times, the message of Sufism has global relevance,” he said.

Noting that every year over 100 billion dollars are spent on securing the world from terrorism, he said that the money should have been spent on building lives of the poor instead.

In an oblique reference to Pakistan, which has often been accused of harbouring terrorists, Modi said,”there are forces and groups that are instruments of state policy and design.  There are others recruited to the cause in misguided belief.”

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First Published : 17 Mar 2016, 11:32:00 PM