Friday, January 22, 2010


Islamic conference featuring Zakir Naik begins amidst controversy in Chennai
Submitted by admin3 on 14 January 2010 - 9:02pm.
Indian Muslim
By V.M. Khaleelur Rahman for

Chennai: An Islamic conference and exhibition titled Peace – Vision of Islam 2010 was inaugurated in the evening on 13th January at Injambakkam, East Coast Road in Chennai leaving behind a controversy on some remarks of Dr Zakir Naik. Dr. Naik's speech and question and answer session on the subject "Religion in the Right Perspective" will be held on the last day 17th January.

Actually the Peace exhibition was to be held at Madrasa-e-Azam higher secondary school, Anna Salai, near Spencer Plaza, Chennai but due to some objections from some Muslims, a different site was arranged at Injambakkam. Though it is somewhat away from Chennai, the Vision of Islam 2010 is expected to be successful mainly because people are interested in taking part in such programmes. I asked a visitor if the distance is a problem, he said, "let us consider it as a good experience. It is Allah’s will and we should accept it.” The volunteers are also discharging their duties well and explaining the subjects of the displayed Quranic verses and Ahaadees in the proper perspective. I also saw some non Muslims taking keen interest in Islamic thoughts.

In the exhibition, there are beautiful big charts displaying the holy Quranic verses and Ahadees (sayings of Prophet Mohammed -sal-am) with their translations in Urdu, Tamil and English. Many Islamic book shops and stalls of different schools and colleges are also there from which one can have education details. People show interest in all these and try to understand Islam more and more. There are also food stalls selling different vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes at reasonable prices.

The holy Quran says “waatasimu bihablillahi jameeawn wala tafarraqu” – hold tight to the rope of God and be not divided among yourselves – but we do not seem to follow this. A Maulana pointed out to me in the exhibition that we should be patient ignoring what has happened and also consider such things as a blessing in disguise”. After all we are human beings. Even if Dr. Zakir Naik has committed any mistake, can’t it be pardoned for the sake of good works he and his associates are doing? Can there not be an end to the maslaki fights the community is indulging in different places? I am asking all including Dr. Zakir Naik as he is in controversy now. All will agree that most of the controversies have nothing to do with main Islamic principles and it is just small differences on political and other minor issues which divide and make us fight with one another issuing fatwas of kufr. Is it not ridiculous and shameful? We cannot and should not forget that unity is strength and division is defeat.

Dr. Zakir Naik draws large crowds everywhere including Chennai and other places in Tamil Nadu. Though some of his remarks were blown out of proportions which created some problems for him, my estimation after interviewing so many people is that the Muslim community particularly youngsters are impressed by the way Dr. Zakir Naik explains Islam and answers questions from the audience. Even today I saw school and college students rushing to the exhibition venue with all interest and enthusiasm.

We cannot deny the good service of Dr. Zakir Naik in making people belonging to different communities realise that God is the same for all even though we call Him in different names. Muslims, Hindus, Christians and others who listen to his speeches and read his books feel that the entire humanity is one as God is one even though they may be different in caste, colour, creed, language and religion. This Islamic principle of Vahdaniyyat(Monotheism) is liked by the people also because the old Tamil adage is that Onray kulam oruvanay devan – humanity is one and God is one.

1 comment:

  1. Peace!

    Dear brother, can you send me a list of the public talks and lectures delivered by Dr Zakir Naik at the Peace Vision of Islam Conference, Chennai?

    You can email them to me at

    May ALLAH reward you, amen!