Jammu and Kashmir L-G urges religious heads to spread message of peace and harmony

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Srinagar, Mar 23 (PTI) Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha on Tuesday said violence has no place in any civilised society and peaceful co-existence is the best means to resolve problems, urging religious heads to spread the message of peace and harmony among the new generation.

The Lt governor was speaking during the 'Confluence of Religious Leaders in Kashmir' conference at SKICC here, an official spokesman said.

The day-long conference witnessed participation of around 550 religious heads, including moulvis and muftis.

Terming the conference as a historic moment for Jammu and Kashmir, Sinha appreciated the efforts being made to discuss the role of religious leaders and women in creating a violence-free society, counter-radicalisation and modernisation of madrasa education.

'Jammu and Kashmir has remained home to diverse religious and cultural influences which deeply enriched its pluralistic ethos. No development and progress is possible without sustained peace, communal harmony and brotherhood,' the Lt governor said.

Sinha emphasised the need for restoration of the pristine glory of Jammu and Kashmir as an abode of peace, amity, communal harmony and brotherhood, and urged the people to come forward in achieving this goal.

'Violence has no place in any civilised society and peaceful co-existence is the best means to resolve problems,' he added.

While addressing the issue of counter-radicalisation, the Lt governor urged community elders, religious heads and torchbearers to spread the message of love, peace and tolerance among the youth.

'Radicalisation should not be associated with a specific religion. There is a need for Islamic scholars to formulate a policy and a process by which a helpless person, who is exposed to a violent ideology, is prevented from getting radicalised,' he said.

Sinha also highlighted the significant role of family, community influencers, religious and spiritual heads in the counter-radicalisation process to thwart any attempt being made from across the border to incite communal hatred in the society.

The L-G also urged the religious heads and women to play an active role in the prevention of drug addiction.

Referring to social media-based propaganda, he called upon all the stakeholders to make collaborative efforts to check the violent ideology and propaganda being spread on social media by certain groups in radicalising the young population.

'Although, the level of radicalisation is comparatively much lesser in Jammu Kashmir, it is very important to focus on counter-radicalisation for ensuring social harmony and national security,' he said.

Sinha also underlined the important role of mainstream media to counter such elements and extremist ideologies.

'These efforts are not written ideologies or some philosophies but it is about humanness and helping the personality of an individual to grow in the right direction,” he said.

Sinha said many people distorted the message of Islam and apart from Maulana Wahiduddin Khan, there are many clerics and 'khatibs' (preachers) who raised voice against deliberate distortion and misinterpretation of the selected portion of Islamic texts.

'There is a need to check propagation and wrong interpretation of texts from holy books, besides realising our responsibilities to show the right way and direction to the one who is treading a wrong path,' he said.

The Lt governor termed Jammu and Kashmir as an ocean of spirituality, saying here the values of humanity and tolerance emanating from the united culture of Shavisim, Buddhism and Sufism have always flourished over the centuries.

Speaking on the immense talent and potential possessed by the youth of Jammu and Kashmir, the Lt governor said under the guidance of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the UT administration is putting in all efforts to provide them with rightful opportunities.

Highlighting the reformative measures being taken in the education sector by the government, Sinha said from this session onwards, education will be imparted in all five official languages.

'I am confident that the young generation will contribute significantly in making Jammu and Kashmir the most developed region in the country,' he said.

Speaking on the occasion, Moulana Muzaffar stressed on the need to put a special focus on misrepresentation of Islamic teachings and added that certain elements within the community are distorting the Islam's message for peace, love and harmony. PTI SSB SNE