‘Rashtriya Ekta Divas’ celebrations in Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) on 31st October, 2014 to commemorate the Birth Anniversary of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel concluded with the Lecture by Prof. Shamsur Rehman Faruqi. The lecture was organized by the Outreach Programme in collaboration with Department of Urdu, JMI.
Prof. Kum Kum Dewan, Offg. Vice-Chancellor, presided over the event while Prof. Wahajuddin Alvi, HoD Urdu introduced the distinguished speaker and Dr. Mohammad Sarwarul Huda gave the vote of thanks. The programmed was anchored by Prof. Shahzad Anjum.
The lecture, which was held in the Edward Said Hall, saw a capacity packed audience that listened enraptured to a passionate and highly knowledgeable discourse on the idea of identity in Urdu literature by Prof. Faruqi. Prof. Faruqi explained how Urdu was a child of Indian soil and had in its very nature a plural tradition. Any suggestion of factionalism that might have entered the speaker of the language could be ascribed to the British intervention in Indian culture that caused a severe sense of instability amongst Indians, leading to insecurity and threatened identity. Quoting incidents as well as poetry from life and times of Maulana Roomi, Hazrat Nizamuddin and Amir Khusru, he put across to the audience that Indo-Muslim mind has always been informed by compositeness that captured the endearing diversity of India in its linguistic and literary productions. The famous lines of Swami Ram Tirath, Urdu poet who was contemporary of Allama Iqbal, “yeh sair kya hi ajab anokhi, ki raam tujhme mein ram mein hoin” were quoted with flourish by him and by the time he concluded his lecture he had convinced almost every listener in the audience that Urdu language doesn’t need to provide any evidence to prove that it is a language of integration that brought India’s diverse streams of thought together.
Prof. Kum Kum Dewan, Offg. Vice-Chancellor, JMI said in her remarks that she was greatly inspired by Prof. Faruqi’s lecture and appreciated his words by recalling her own childhood and how she was never taught by her family and friends to look at Indian identity as burdened with the identity of religion. Rather, she expressed the idea that she is the very child of a composite culture and is brought to be celebrated ‘National Integration Day’ today with her beloved university, Jamia Millia Islamia.
[This is an official Jamia press release dated Oct. 31, 2014]