Religious scholars underline the need of peace and tolerance in society
Prominent religious scholars, representing various schools of thought, have pledged to strive for a peaceful and tolerant society. While underscoring the need of peace and tolerance, the religious scholars emphasized that difference of opinion should not be made a source of hatred and enmity among the people. “Instead,” they said, “discouraging all sort of violent tendencies in society is also a collective responsibility of the religious scholars.” They expressed these views while participating in a two-day seminar ‘The Role of Religious Scholars in establishment of a peaceful and balanced society’, organized by Pak Institute for Peace Studies.
Mr. Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar, Advisor to Prime Minister on Human Rights, while addressing the concluding session of the seminar as chief guest, said that to address the contemporary issues, a union of Islamic countries needs to constitute on the similar pattern of European Union. He said that religious scholars have an instrumental role in the promotion of peace and tolerance in society. Eminent religious scholar and Chairman Ruet-e-Hilal Committee, Mufti Muneeb ur Rehman said that we cannot blame others for our every social ill. Instead, he said, it’s time for serious soul searching and self- accountability. He said that terrorism should not be justified on any pretext or excuse while government of Pakistan should also take an unambiguous stance regarding war against terror. He also underlined the need of a long-term national agenda to confront with all the challenges effectively.
Acclaimed religious scholar and Chairman of Islamic Ideological Council Moulana Mohammad Khan Shirani said that many of our problems have been emanated from the unconstitutional and undemocratic regimes and the same is true regarding the state of peace and tolerance in society. He said that the religious scholars should spread the message of peace and love and self-accountability should remain a priority before us. Dr. Khalid Masood, former chairman of Islamic Ideological Council emphasized on establishing rule of law and said that religious scholars should raise awareness in society about the importance of rule of law in any functional society.
Dr. Qibla Ayaz, Director Institute of Islamic Studies Peshawar said that the situation regarding peace and tolerance in the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa was ideal before the Afghan War. However, the war has destroyed the entire social fabric of the province and sectarianism also took alarming shape afterward. Besides others, prominent scholars including Moulana Atta Ulalh Shahab, Dr. Khalid Zaheer, Moulana Raghib Naeeemi, Qari Zameer Mansoori, Akbar Hussain Zahidi, Qazi Mahmood ul Hassan, Syed Farhat Hussain Shah, Allama Yaseen Zafar, Abu ul Hassan Shah and Allama Ammar Khan Nasir also spoke on the occasion and shed light on various aspects of the topic.
Mr. Amir Rana, Director PIPS expressed his gratitude to all the participants and said that dialogue is the most powerful weapon in today’s age f globalization. He appreciated the spirit of the discussion and said that such lively debates are instrumental in finding solutions of confronting various contemporary issues and challenges.