J&K a global brand of pluralism and tolerance: Akhtar

SRINAGAR, OCTOBER 27: Describing J&K as an abode of Sufism, Education Minister Naeem Akhtar Tuesday said the influence of Sufism transformed Kashmiri society into a global brand of pluralism and tolerance.

“Sufi is not a concept of the dead. It is a concept of living, thriving societies, and that is the kind of transformation Kashmir is continuing to live with” Mr Akhtar said at the International Symposium on Sufism organised by the Department of Education at the University of Kashmir.

Recalling the influence of scholars and craftsmen from Central Asia on the cultural landscape of Kashmir, Mr Akhtar said the motive of Islam has not been to convert non-Muslims, but to live in peace and harmony with other communities.

“A brotherhood of Sufis left their homes in what was the cradle of the civilization with nothing except Quran in their hearts, prayers on their lips and skills in their hands. They introduced contemporary knowledge and industry in Kashmir and made us what we are today,” he said adding that it is important that we do some self introspection and imbibe the true essence of Sufism that brought us peace and tranquility within our hearts and within the society.

Vice-Chancellor, Kashmir University, Prof Khurshid Iqbal Andrabi, Director, School Education, Shah Faesal and a galaxy of scholars and academicians also participated in the symposium.

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