Creating bridges

“If you want to empower women in our society, it cannot be done without education. If Muslim society wants to move ahead, it has to strengthen both women and education. Today, computers have entered the madrasas. I say that with the computers, the 21st century is also entering the madrasas.

Razia Sultana, Hazrat Mahal , Benazir Bhutto are role models for Muslim girls. Educated, computer-savvy girls can bring about a revolution in Muslim society.” says Dr. Gunvant Shah.

Dr. Gunvant Shah is going to lecture on the 16th November 2008 at the Darul Koran Madrasa in Jambusar, near Vadodara, Gujarat.
The subject : Mohammed, the Super Man.
The occasion: An awards ceremony for Muslim girls, recognizing their educational achievements.
Organized by: The Setu Family Trust.

Dr. Gunvant Shah has written extensively on Prophet Mohammed and has also studied the Koran. He says that during Mohammed’s time, girl children were buried alive in the desert when they were 5-7 years old. Once a father was digging a grave for his little daughter. His forehead was covered with sweat. The little girl, unaware that her father wanted to kill her, wiped the sweat from his brow with gentle hands.

Dr. Gunvant Shah says: “I want to recount this story and others to reach out to the audience in the madrasa. Mohammad gave society a new religion, a new faith. That faith emphatically stresses on the education of women.”

He adds: “When the principal of MMM High School, which is a part of the madrasa, Bashir Patel came to invite me, he said ‘The doors of our hearts, homes and our madrasa are always open to you.’

Events like this awards ceremony will heal the wounds of communalism. Muslims are also victims of terrorism. Events like these should be organized to bring together Hindus and Muslims. So that the ravine between the two communities does not widen. And a new ‘Setu‘* is created.”

* Setu – bridge

From Jyoti Unadkat’s article in Chitralekha, 24 Nov 2008
Translated by Batul Mukhtiar © 2008