Sufi Conference in J&K Lays Emphasis on Peace, Communal Harmony and Tolerance

by Abbas Adil

A regional level Sufi conference was organised on Saturday at Baba Shukur Din RA at Watlab Sopore by Voice for Peace and Justice with an intent to lay the emphasis on Peace, communal harmony, brotherhood and tolerance.

The event was attended by hundreds of people from different nook and corners of the valley.

During the conference, a number of Sufiyana music segments were performed by the Kashmiri singers of the valley which attracted a good audience including writers, poets, authors and other intellectuals.

While speaking on the occasion, Sheikh Minhaj, general secretary of the Voice for Peace and Justice, said that extremist groups are attempting to destroy Kashmir’s cultural traditions and that Sufism is the only way to restore peace, communal harmony, and brotherhood. The Voice for Peace and Justice is committed to assisting Kashmir in reviving Sufism, he added.

While Bashir Ahmad, Administrator of J&K Waqf Board for Baba Shukur ud Din RA Shrine, emphasised that Sufi saints travelled tremendous distances to unite people of all creeds, castes, and religions, he also stated that in order to restore the atmosphere in Kashmir, Sufism must be promoted and practised.

He said: “Thanking Voice for Peace and Justice for their steadfast efforts to bring back Sufism in Jammu and Kashmir.”

In his speech, Haji Mohammad Abdullah Dar, a renowned social activist from Sopore brought attention to Baba Shukur Din RA’s teachings and highlighted his contributions to the wellbeing of the people of Kashmir.

He continued by saying that we must continue the legacy of the Sufi saints because they left their comfort zones only to guide people down the right path.

Their contributions to world peace and religious harmony will be revered and remembered forever, he said. He also expressed his gratitude to the Voice for Peace and Justice for occasionally hosting such seminars.

The president of Voice for Peace and Justice, Farooq Ganderbali, a well-known social activist, stated in his address that although radical and divisive forces in Kashmir are free to label us traitors or whatever else they choose, it is a bitter truth that religious extremism is converting playgrounds into cemeteries.

While the prominent members of the extremist groups are happily settled, the mothers of the poorer members, who were used as cannon fodder for their own personal mileage, are still wailing and waiting for their return.

In order to live in peace in Kashmir, it is imperative that Sufism be revived. The Voice for Peace and Justice is determined to reviving Kashmir’s Sufi culture, he added.

While refreshments were provided to the participants, mementos were awarded to individuals who had made outstanding contributions to the resurgence of Sufism in Kashmir.

Ghulam Mohd, Molvi Mohd Youns Khan, President Utthaan Mission Trust, Zeeshan Farooq Dar, Editor in Chief Daily Asian Express Ajaz Kawoosi, Abdul Salam Kashmiri poet, Managing Director of Dar Industries, Ghulam Nabi Dar, President Jammu & Kashmir Youth Development Forum Shehreyar Dar, Mullahas, Sufi poets and different other renowned personalities were also present on the occasion. — IANS

Photo: Sufi Conference in J-K’s Baramulla

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