A number of Hindu and Muslim leaders and youth joined forces at Parmarth Niketan in Rishikesh for an event on strengthening inter-religious collaboration of Hindu and Muslim leaders and youth. The event was organised as a show of interfaith unity and harmony in a time of growing global strife.
Religious leaders shared experiences, discussed challenges and potential solutions, highlighted successes, and identified potential areas for concrete joint collaboration during the two-day event which concluded on Sunday. The gathering will also take dialogue into action through a two-day youth leader training at Parmarth Niketan which will conclude on Monday, during which young faith leaders and youth from faith-based organisations will be trained to be champions of peaceful and inclusive societies.
Swami Chidanand Saraswati said, “India is not just a piece of land but a land of peace. We are the longest standing democracy that has provided refugee and home to people of all faiths. To me, interfaith is when we enter into the common faith of our one humanity. We remember that we may worship our own but we must respect all.”
KAICIID programme director Muhammad Shifan Rafaideen said, “On behalf of KAICIID, it gives me profound joy to be part of the Parmarth Niketan and Global Interfaith WASH Alliance launch of this event on peaceful dialogue, diversity, social coexistence. This partnership is important for us to enhance the inter-religious dialogue within the Indian context. Together we are working to accomplish the noble goal of strengthening peace and harmony between and within communities, especially for youth to be included, is the thread of all religions.”
Imam Umer Ahmes Ilyasi opined, “When we first brought Gurukul and Madrasa children together here we had a great purpose and intention behind it and that was that it would be the beginning of a nationwide revolution which will begin to shape a more peaceful and inclusive societies. These children from our faith institutions will be the future priests, maulanas and muftis of tomorrow then there will be no conflict over mandirs, masjids or any place of worship because innately they will no longer see them as separate. ”
Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati said, “The essence of Indian culture, regardless of our religious tradition, is Vasudhaiv Kutumbakam, the whole world is one family. This great event is bringing us together to re-emphasise our togetherness, to learn together and grow together.
The future is in the hands of the youth and that is why we have called all our young sisters and brothers together to join hands as one earth family for peace and togetherness.”