Melbourne, April 24
Pakistani Muslims were among members of various religious communities who praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi at an event in Australia for his “ability to respect all communities.”
The Vishwa Sadbhawana event an initiative of the NID foundation was organised at Bunjil Palace in Melbourne in Australia on April 23.
Religious leaders, intellectuals, scholars, preachers and researchers attended the event organised by the NID Foundation in association with The Indian Minorities Foundation (IMF), NID Foundation New Delhi, and Namdhari Sikh Society.
Dr Tariq Butt a member of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community who hailed from Lahore said, “What I can say personally from my side I’ve got lots of Indian friends and I’ve seen them now getting united and doing many activities. We’ve been part of their activities as well. I think there is now more outreach between Indian Muslims and Pakistani Muslims altogether. We want to bring more commonalities than differences. Modi hai toh mumkin hai.”
Stating that the event was a great initiative and uniting Hindu and Muslim communities together and bringing them on one platform, he said that PM Modi is doing the right thing by encouraging the communities to engage with other communities to promote harmony and peace.
“PM Modi has the charisma where people are following him regardless of their religious inclination which is good,” he said.
Sadbhawana event is an initiative begun by NID Foundation taking the vision of Prime Minister Narendra Modi of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ where he called the whole world as ‘one family’, to every corner of the world.
Tahar Shakir from Karachi, a representative of the Dawoodi Bohra Muslim community said, “We recently had an event where we had a university, a new chapter of our university – Aljamea-tus-Saifiyah in Mumbai’s Marol and Modiji himself had come and one of the things he said to us was that please don’t call with a lot of honorifics. I am a part of your household.” The PM inaugurated the campus in February. “We now have a good relationship and we have enjoyed a really good time in the last nine years and our community respects PM Modi. Our community will be there in Sydney to greet him when he arrives,” he said.
Imtiaz Ahmed Naveed, an Ahmadiyya Muslim from NSW, Australia also lauded PM Modi for trying to bring peace.
“Whatever news I see, I feel that he is working very hard, he is bringing all religions at one platform, talking about their progress, trying to bring peace. I think he’s trying his best,” he said.
Philip James Huggins, Bishop in the Anglican Church of Australia, said that the Sadbhawna event had the spirit of friendship and love and praised PM Modi.
“Well, not only Prime Minister Modi going to the Vatican, but I see him doing his best in that regard. And I think the new arrangements of trade and of parliamentary democracy and visits of friendship and the increased migration to Australia from India is making our partnership and our friendship absolutely wonderful and very important in terms of civilized life on the planet,” he said.
He pointed out that the relationship between India and Australia has blossomed under the leadership of PM Modi. “We have recently seen cricket diplomacy between the two countries. There is a beautiful feature of Indian Democracy is inclusive participation of different communities in each other’s festivals and rituals,” he said.He also said that he does not adhere to the narrative being built against India that minorities are being targeted.
“In India, the majority population makes it easier for the minority communities to live together and progress and India is both spiritual and secular,” he added.
PM Modi will be travelling to Australia in May to take part in the QUAD leadership summit.
The announcement was made during the joint press conference hosted by the Prime Minister along with Australian counterpart Anthony Albanese, who was on a four-day visit to India in March.
“India and Australia are both members of the Quad. I thank PM Albanese for inviting me to Australia for the Quad Leaders’ Summit in May. I have invited him to India for the G20 summit in September,” PM Modi had said.
The leaders of the QUAD group have met on four occasions earlier and their next meeting will be held in Australia. The group’s importance in the region has increased due to its keen interest in sustainable and inclusive economic growth and increasing people-to-people connections between QUAD members and non-QUAD members.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on several occasions has highlighted that QUAD is a force of global good and is aimed at developing the region while protecting the interests of all members of the Indo-Pacific region.