Etiquette for the Guest in Islam

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 10 February 2021 | Posted in , ,

[The IndianMuslimObserver.com endeavors to acquaint its readers about the Islamic values and conduct. We publish such write-ups from time to time to enhance knowledge and present the true teachings of Islam, especially at a time when this great religion and its followers are demonized, vilified and targeted worldwide through constant Islamophobic attacks. – Founder-Editor]

1. When you visit someone as a guest, do take some gifts for the host or for his children according to your means. Keep in mind the taste and liking of your host while choosing gifts for him. Exchange of presents and gifts augments the sentiments of love and promotes intimate relationship. A gift creates a soft corner in the heart of the receiver for the donor.

2. Do not stay as a guest with anyone for more than three days, save under special circumstances or when the host insists on your staying with him for a longer period. The Prophet (peace be upon him) affirms: "It is not permissible for a guest to stay so long with the host as to cause him trouble." (Al-Aadab-ul-Mufrad). Sahih Muslim reports: "It is not permissible for a Muslim to stay so long with his brother as to make him a sinner." The people submitted: "O Prophet of Allah (peace be upon him)! How will a Muslim make his brother a sinner in this manner?" The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "By staying so long with his brother that his brother may be exhausted of all means of entertaining him."

3. Do not always be a guest of others. Invite others also to be your guests and entertain them liberally.

4. When you stay as a guest with somebody, take along with you necessary baggage and bedding etc according to the season. In winter especially, never forget to take the bedding with you, otherwise the host will be put to extreme hardship. It is highly improper that the guest shall in any way become an unbearable burden for the host.

5. Keep in mind the engagements and duties of your host. Take care that your host’s occupation, duties and engagements are not in any way disturbed by your presence as a guest with him.

6. Do not make all sorts of demands on your host. Be content with whatever provisions he makes for your comfort and entertainment and thank him for that. Do not put him in any extraordinary trouble.

7. If your host’s women are not your close or blood relation, avoid entering into a conversation with them without reason. Do not eavesdrop on the mutual conversation of your host’s women. Behave yourself in such a manner that your conversation or conduct does not become a nuisance for them. Do not violate the privacy and the limitations of Purdah in any case.

8. If for some reason you do not wish to eat with your host, or you are observing fast, excuse yourself politely and say a prayer invoking the Grace and Blessings of Allah upon your host. When the Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) presented a sumptuous meal to his venerable guests and the guests would not partake of it, he said to them: "Gentlemen, why don’t you eat?" In a bid to put him at ease, the angels submitted: "Please do not take it ill. As a matter of fact, we cannot eat. We have come only to convey the glad tidings of the birth of a talented son to you."

9. When you attend a feast, say a prayer at the end of the meal invoking Allah to bless the host with extensive means, grace, favour, salvation and His Mercy. Abu Athhim bin Tahan once invited the Prophet (peace be upon him) and his illustrious companions to a feast. When the meal was over, the Prophet (peace be upon him) observed: "Reward your brother." The illustrious companions submitted: "How can we reward him, O Prophet of Allah (peace be upon him)?" The Prophet (peace be upon him) observed: "When a man pays a visit to his brother and eats and drinks there, he can reward his brother by praying for Allah’s Favour and Blessings upon his brother." (Abu Dawud). The Prophet (peace be upon him) once visited the house of Sa’ad bin Ubadah. Sa’ad presented to the Prophet (peace be upon him) bread and olive oil. The Prophet (peace be upon him) took the meal and then prayed for him: "May the fasting people break their fasts with your provisions! May the pious partake of your meals and may the angels pray for Allah’s Mercy and forgiveness for you." (Abu Dawud).

(This is an extract from Etiquette of Life in Islam by Muhammad Yousuf Islahi)

“Be Our Guest" campaign launched for Malls in Northern Emirates

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | | Posted in , , , ,

Line Investments & Property (LIP) malls initiates five weeks of Spend and Win promotions with Valentine's and Mission Mars Celebrations

IMO News Service

Dubai, UAE: The shopping mall and management division of Lulu Group International, Line Investments & Property (LIP) introduces the 'Be Our Guest' campaign with a number of initiatives for the month of February across three Malls in Northern Emirates, RAK Mall, Lulu Mall Fujairah and Mall of Umm Al Quwain.

The Spend and Win promotion will have 35 daily prize winners and a grand prize winner in each mall. From February 7th to March 13th, shoppers can be part of the Spend & Win promotion by spending AED 100/- at any store and AED 200/- at Lulu Hypermarket to stand an additional chance of winning.

Shoppers spending AED 100/- at any F&B outlet can double their chances of winning a daily Prize of AED 1,000/- for 35 days or win a grand prize of AED 10,000/-. The prize adds up to AED 50,000 in Tenant Vouchers and there will be Social Media Contests to give away AED 2,000 worth of vouchers as prizes.

For Mission Mars celebrations, there will be amazing photo opportunities with replicas of space shuttle and astronauts. Visitors to the Malls can attend information sessions on Mission Mars and get detailed knowledge from the experts at hand. Customers are also encouraged to take their pictures at the Mars lookalike photo wall, post them on their channels and tag the mall.

For Valentine’s, there will be special offers by numerous retailers and special activations in the mall on the 14th of February. Each mall will be distributing flowers and gifts to couples and customers next to Valentine’s picture frame. People can also click a memorable picture while receiving the flowers.

The Food Festival, Valentine’s Day and the Mission Mars celebrations with two weeks of engaging entertainment will enrich the mall visit experience further, in addition to the giveaway prizes. 

 All Line Investments & Property Malls place great emphasis on safety measures regarding COVID-19, ensuring the public areas remain a safe place to shop and dine in.

OPINION: Issues faced by Indian Muslims and Key to emancipation

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 08 February 2021 | Posted in , , , ,

By Asad Mirza

It seems as if the Indian Muslims are under a collective siege from the external as well as internal forces and pressures. External pressure is being applied from the outside to weaken it psychologically, lessen the morale of its followers and instead of allowing them to focus their energies on the community’s and country’s progress, they are thrown challenges continuously, to counter which a lot of energy and resources of the community are ill spent.

However, it would be better if the Muslim community instead of turning the issues into an existential one, introspects and analyze the factors which are responsible for the community’s current fate and dilemmas faced by it. The strategy to tackle the issues should be a multi-pronged one, with clear and identifiable inputs, ensuring maximum tangible outcomes. The problems faced by Indian Muslims are social, political, economic and religious, thus the strategy to handle them should be a multi-pronged one.

The political developments during the last five years, and in particular since last May ‘19 in India, have forced almost all Muslims, community’s intellectuals, sympathizers, leaders and well-wishers to turn into a pessimist. They brood on many recent political developments and reaction of the Muslim religious and community leaders to the issues. However, this brooding is not accompanied by any affirmative action by them. This pessimist attitude and a feeling of despondency do not bode well for the community. Instead, what is needed at the moment is neither self-pity nor brooding, but to self-introspect sincerely. Identify and analyze the issues, which afflict the community, and seek out pragmatic solutions, which may bode well for the community and the country, both.

The answer to most of the ills faced by the community lies in introspection and analyzing the issues, which have held the community despondent and backward so far, in depth and with sincerity. The first step should be to prioritize the issues. Altruistically speaking, first, the community should try to present a unified image, not fraught by sectional differences.

Issues faced by Muslims

A movement should be started within the community to eschew its sectional and denominational divide, by its religious leaders. Others see the Muslims as a monolith community, not a faction ridden one. So if we are seen as one, then we should act as one. This is easier said than done and would require a lot of efforts and tolerance amongst our clerics and their blind followers.

Secondly, the community should adopt a proactive approach not a reactionary one to handle issues at hand. At the political level, people who do not represent the community sincerely should not be promoted and tolerated as representing the community instead they should be excommunicated. Only sincere, committed and result-oriented individuals should be allowed to be part of the decision-making and delivery mechanism process on behalf of 14 million Muslims.

Thirdly, it should try to forge sustainable links with other minorities in the country like Parsis, Sikhs and Christians. It should try to learn from these minorities, as to how they have fared well in educational, social and economic sectors, utilising their community’s resources and guidance by their leaders. This collaboration will also help further the principles of tolerance and coexistence.

Fourthly, Muslims should engage in sincere self-introspection and try to reform the community of customs and practices, which are detrimental to the growth of the community as a whole, besides being un-Islamic, such as curbing wasteful expenditure on marriages and other religious functions. They’ll have to focus more on image building of the community by promoting cleanliness and education, two issues that have been stressed again and again in the Holy Quran.

And lastly, the message to change the community’s psyche and approach on issues facing it should be conveyed in a logical and easily understandable format to all, by a committee of elders representing all the factions and schools of thought of the community besides the political and social activists.

At the political front, Muslims should adopt a multi-dimensional strategy, strengthening the secular and democratic forces of the country, assured of the support of 63% secular and right thinking population of India.

Key to emancipation

As far as being an active player in the county’s political process is concerned, we should nurture and motivate our youngsters to involve themselves in the political activities, shoulder to shoulder with the secular forces. We seldom engage with our political representatives constructively. We should try to form a proactive relationship with the politicians, to ensure that besides raising our grievances with our representatives we are seen as part of the team, which delivers the results on their behalf in their constituency. We’ll have to build a committed cohort of leaders, who reflect the true aspirations of the community besides striving to empower it both educationally and politically.

A key factor identified for the plight of the community is the lack of education amongst Muslims. In reality during the last 25 years or so the educational consciousness amongst Muslims has increased and the community is much more educated than previously. However, we still have to focus our energies on and plan for educating the children at the lowest rung of the social and economic ladder. We need to strengthen our schools and colleges at village and district level, ensure delivery of quality education to all sections of the community, besides a zero dropout rate. This will need coordinated efforts and counselling, both. For this to be achieved, instead of looking up to the government, we should initiate our own efforts.

It’s a fact that Muslims have a school and college in every city and town of India. But most of them are not equipped to the modern standards or don’t have the faculty which could ensure delivery of quality education. The need is to chart out a comprehensive plan for making these institutes functional and productive. This could be achieved through an all-India umbrella body, which should be tasked to ensure how to impart quality education to all at the lowest cost through available infrastructure.

During the last 25 years or so a number of educational and social organizations managed by Muslims have sprung-up in every nook and corner of the country. But in reality, most of these initiatives are confined to individual self-promotion and lack enough professional attitude and commitment to perform and deliver. The task should be to bring all such organizations at a common platform, and pooling their human and financial resources, hammer out a deliverable strategy which is in tune with the current demands and aspirations of the people and which fulfil the community’s and society’s needs pragmatically.

Besides education, the proposed all-India body should also represent the Muslims at every conceivable charity work, whether be it a natural calamity or supporting the government’s various social drives or feeding the poor or providing care to the ailing. We need to emerge as a community, which should be seen at the forefront of every welfare event, helping out shoulder to shoulder with our brethren.

Fostering a Community psyche

The Indian Muslims, as a community, do not possess a common community psyche. They are divided in many factions and no faction is ready to tolerate the other. Community unity, in spite of factionalism is found in abundance in other minorities of the country like Sikhs and Parsis. We have to learn a lot from other minorities on how to develop a community psyche, so that each and every one considers them to be part of a larger whole, and the guiding spirit should be collectivism instead of individualism, every Muslim should be seen as contributing both physically and financially, for enhancing the community’s and lives of our brethren.

All the above is easier said than done, and the big question remains, who is going to deliver it and how? The answer lies in our religious leaders. It is a fact that a vast percentage of the Muslims, still listens to and acts upon the messages conveyed to them by our clergy. But most of the time the messages conveyed are not relevant in any manner to the development and progress of the community in the light of the Islamic teachings, but on mundane issues. Instead our clerics will have to work to contextualize the message of the Holy Quran and Ahaadith to the present era, only then they’ll be effective and remembered. For this purpose the speech before the Juma Khutba can be a very important tool.

Clergy’s role

The Muslim clergy should first try to modernize it. It would be good if it could start on a path of critical and scientific thinking or Ijtihad, on issues of importance to the community. Instead of harping back to old and irrelevant texts, it would be better if it could consider each and every issue in a pragmatic fresh perspective based on the correct interpretation of the Holy Quran and Ahaadith. As the Holy Quran is a dynamic not a static book, it offers new solutions as per the new assimilation and analytic prowess gained by its followers with every passing day.

We also bemoan the issue of lack of funding for establishing new educational institutes. Here we forget that if the Indian Muslims decide to contribute every paisa of the interest accrued in their bank accounts and the yearly Zakat to a single entity, then the fate of the community could be changed completely in the next 5 years. This sum could be utilised to establish and rejuvenate the educational institutes, orphanages, taking care of the needy and providing for medical facilities for the community and everyone else.

In addition we also have to present a modern image of the community to other faiths and countrymen. We sound hollow when we decry the increasing tide of Islamophobia in the country and elsewhere in the world. But how do we tackle the issue? In this age of information technology, many battles are being fought and won using social media tools. The latest example in this regard is the surge in Islamophobic messages on the social media and response of the Muslim nations. Due to the overwhelming response of the Muslim countries, many social media platforms had to issue guidelines on how to manage the Islamophobic content, besides immediate remorse shown and forgiveness sought by people who engaged in posting Islamophobic content on various social media websites.

Muslims and the Media

It would be better if the community should equip itself to counter the fake and biased news, first. A strong rebuttal and countering mechanism would serve the community well, as the cost for this would not be too high.

The first step towards this could be to build a monitoring team, which could keep track of all anti-Muslim news, to be fed to a team of fact checkers, who with strong research and messaging capabilities should be able to counter any anti-Muslim narrative promptly and professionally.

A central team of Media Monitors based in Delhi should keep track of state monitors and should be equipped to work out quick and coherent responses to every issue, charge or misrepresentation on various social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp.

Next, a group of community spokesmen should be trained in the language of the states to which they belong. They should be coached in language nuances, debating skills and how to engage in a coherent and conclusive dialogue with their competitors, viz. every aspect of conducting a successful verbal communication process.

Every state should have a small team of at least five people who could represent the community at every media opportunity. An effort should be made to constitute a panel of erudite and knowledgeable people to represent the community at various media outlets. The views espoused by this panel should be endorsed by leading clerics and social leaders beforehand.

All this seems achievable and commendable, but the biggest requisite for this to succeed would be the coming together of different leaders representing various sects, outfits and schools within the Muslim community at one platform. We should have a panel of academics, researchers, ideologues, businessmen and entrepreneurs, activists and ground level workers, who should be seen as the real face of the community.

Way forward

Moreover, it would be better if the Muslim community instead of turning the current concerns into an existential one, introspects and find the areas and issues, which beleaguers it and where it has floundered, besides trying to be seen as part of the county’s mainstream. Follow it with judicious and committed planning and strategizing, so that these determinants could be overcome and after the next 25 years, when we’ll be celebrating the century of our independence, we can proudly say that the community has fulfilled the aspirations of its followers and countrymen, both.

What we need is a clear-cut plan and a will to innovate and implement those programmes, which will take the community out of its slumber and apathy and take it on the path of progress. Until and unless the Muslim community as a whole decides to change its psyche and reform itself, nobody can help the community survive the present onslaught.

[Asad Mirza is a New Delhi-based political commentator. He was also associated with BBC Urdu Service and Khaleej Times. He writes on Muslims, educational, international affairs, interfaith and current affairs. He can be reached at asad.mirza.nd@gmail.com]

AMU alumnus Dr Sandeep Shandilya becomes first person in India to crack UGC NET in 6 different subjects

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | | Posted in , , , ,

IMO News Service

Aligarh: The University Grants Commission National Eligibility Test (UGC NET) is one of the challenging competitive tests in the country, and cracking it is not a cakewalk. Many candidates spend years preparing to clear it. But, it looks incredible to the mind and eye that Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) alumnus, Dr Sandeep Shandilya, was the first person in the country to qualify UGC NET in six different subjects.

He holds the distinction of a NET qualifier in an array of subjects like the Management, Commerce, Economics, Population Studies, HRM and Education and UPSLET in Commerce.

Qualifying NET in six different subjects should have made him a story of grit, motivation and inspiration for others. But, it is lamentable that Dr Sandeep, who remains an unsung hero, still sits puzzled about why his record never came to the public eye.

Surprisingly, earlier in the month, a news dispatch reported a story of a Kanpur resident making a record by qualifying NET six times. A record accomplished long time ago by Dr Sandeep.

On being asked, if he had lost hope, Dr Sandeep said: "I still do not wobble in my path. My courage has been born out of despair. Even if the world fails to recognize my accomplishments, my alma mater, teachers and parents stand by my side."

Dr Sandeep regularly delivers lectures at the Residential Coaching Academy at AMU helping students reach important milestones by qualifying competitive exams. He also delivers lectures for orientation and refresher programs at HRDC, AMU.

"I feel contentment by guiding AMU students in their endeavors. After all, AMU is just not an alma mater to me, it is a temple of learning which provided me with higher education," said Dr Sandeep.

He added that it is imperative for him to live with the inquisitiveness for knowledge and its dissipation.

"I like to provide students with an effective study plan for competitive exams and help them with ways to handle the situation by staying positive and motivated," said Dr Sandeep.

He has developed techniques to solve complicated mathematical and reasoning problems that appear regularly in competitive exams.

After earning a Bachelor degree in Mechanical Engineering from AMU, Dr Sandeep went on to pursue a Masters of Finance and Control (MFC) from AMU. He later completed two Phds, one in commerce from Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi and the other in economics from Dr BR Ambedkar University, Agra. 

He also holds M Com, MA (Economics), MADE, PGDHE, PGDDE, PGDIBO and CIC qualifications and has a splendid experience of 23 years in teaching at AITM (Aligarh), DS College (Aligarh), Government PG College (Fatehabad) and at a private university in Aligarh.

UAE citizenship law for foreigners announced

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | | Posted in , , ,

IMO News Service

Dubai: Amendments to the Executive Regulation of the Federal Law regarding Nationality and Passports allowing professionals, special talents, investors and their families to acquire the Emirati nationality and passport under certain conditions has been approved by the UAE cabinet under the chairmanship of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, WAM news agency reported.

The move is aimed at appreciating and acknowledging the competencies and talents present in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and also to attract more bright minds to the Emirati community leading to the overall prosperity and development of the country.

The categories qualifying to seek the Emirati nationality include artists, intellectuals, talents, scientists, inventors, specialists, doctors, investors and their families (spouse and children). The new amendments will allow them to retain their current nationality.

The Emirati citizenship can be acquired through nominations from Rulers and Crown Princes Courts, Executive Councils, and the Cabinet based on federal entities nominations.

The specific conditions to be met compulsorily for each category for acquiring Emirati citizenship will be the following:

Investors should own a property in the UAE.

Doctors and specialists must be specialized in a unique scientific discipline or any other scientific principles that are highly required in the UAE, the applicant must have acknowledged scientific contributions, studies and research of scientific value and a practical experience of not less than 10 years, in addition to obtaining membership in a reputable organization in his field of specialization.

Scientists are required to be an active researcher in a university or research centre or in the private sector, with a practical experience of not less than 10 years in the same field. They also should have contributions in the scientific field such as winning a prestigious scientific award, or securing substantial funding for their research during the past ten years, it is also mandatory to obtain a recommendation letter from recognized scientific institutions in the UAE.

Inventors who are willing to acquire Emirati citizenship are required to obtain one or more patents that are approved by the UAE Ministry of Economy or any other reputable international body, in addition to a recommendation letter from the Economy Ministry.

Individuals with creative talents such as intellectuals and artists should be pioneers in the culture and art fields and winners of one or more international award. A recommendation letter from related government entities is mandatory as well.

In case of qualifying, and before acquiring the citizenship, other requirements include swearing the oath of allegiance, committing to abide by the Emirati laws and officially informing the respective government agency in case of acquiring or losing any other citizenship are mandated.

The UAE citizenship will be offering several benefits, including the right to establish or own commercial entities and properties, in addition to any other benefits granted by federal authorities after the approval of the Cabinet or local authorities. 

The citizenship can also be withdrawn upon breach of the conditions, according to the new amendments.

Saudi Arabia to continue dominance in Islamic Finance in 2021: Expert

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | | Posted in , , ,

IMO News Service

Saudi Arabia’s credentials is going to boost and its leadership in the Islamic finance is going to continue in 2021, Arab News quoted a senior industry expert as saying. The prospects have brightened after the resolving of the GCC-Qatar rift and the growing focus on green finance.

Bashar Al-Natoor, Fitch Ratings’ Global Head of Islamic Finance, said that the Middle East region, specifically Saudi Arabia, is currently leading the Islamic finance market globally.

Saudi Arabia is maintaining lead across the 5 key sectors of Islamic finance, including Islamic banks, Takaful, Sukuk, fund management and Sharia-compliant corporate sectors. Until now, Saudi Arabia was historically seen to be only leading in countries where the dual Islamic and conventional financing thrived.

The end of the GCC-Qatar rift and the normalization of ties has increased the confidence of the investors in the region and successfully eliminated a political risk, in addition to providing a material boost to the Sukuk market.

Global Halal Food Market expected to reach USD 922.53 billion by 2026

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | | Posted in , , , , ,

IMO News Service

The Halal Food market is witnessing a tremendous growth with the increasing Muslim populations worldwide and their continuously rising annual spending on food. As such, the demand for halal food and beverage products has significantly grown thus compelling the market players to focus on authentic and branded products. A recent study by Polaris Market Research has indicated that the global Halal Food Market is expected to reach USD 922.53 billion by 2026.

Presently, consumers are showing growing interest in halal industry. This is primarily due to the increasing consumer awareness about the nutritional and hygiene advantages, and improving lifestyles as a result of increasing disposable income. These products being processed and packed with much higher regulatory compliance compared conventional food products are gaining significantly popularity. Basically, they do not contain contents or ingredients that are against Islamic beliefs.

Halal foods are expected to be produced, packaged, stored, and distributed as per Islamic teachings. Moreover, these products are considered to be safe, clean, and highly nutritional. The significant growth in Muslim populations across the globe is expected to offer immense opportunities to Halal Food market. In addition, the rapidly accelerating economic power of Islamic countries is anticipated to largely influence them to spend additional money on the branded products.

The growing issues over the absence of proper regulatory framework to assure the authenticity of these products might be a restraint to the commercially produced halal food. The industry can be considered as a fragmented one and the absence of standardized regularizations has repressed the mainstream F&B participants from venturing this section of the worldwide Halal Food market. However, the number of small scale companies meeting the needs of the local populations has been increasing significantly.

Low level of awareness about the presence of authentic halal food brands is acting as a challenge to the industry. As a consequence, the industry is not experiencing demands to its full potential as expected. Moreover, halal authentic issues within the sector are considered quiet minor among consumer. Thus, this requires manufacturers to improve their marketing strategies and production facilities. Furthermore, it becomes difficult to understand consumer perspective about halal food & beverage brands. 

The Asia Pacific Halal Food market is anticipated to dominate the global market by 2026, owing to the presence of emerging nations such as India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Bangladesh, Maldives, and Pakistan. These nations have significant population that follows Islamic beliefs. Moreover, the rising economic conditions in the region provide an opportunity for the foreign players to start of their production facilities, thus offering cost effective products the consumers in the region.

Muslims increasingly enduring ethnic profiling and surveillance in Europe: Amnesty International

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IMO News Service

Amnesty International and Open Society Foundations have published a guide alleging that Muslims are being discriminated against, ethnically profiles and subjected to surveillance in European counter-terrorism efforts.

The Human Rights Guide for Researching Racial and Religious Discrimination in Counter-Terrorism in Europe has specifically highlighted how to lawful activities and affiliations of Muslims have been used for justifying nationality-stripping, expulsion, arrest, surveillance, counter-radicalization measures and many other restrictions on their rights.

Eda Seyhan, the author of the research guide, was quoted by Helsinki Times as saying, “In the never-ending ‘War on Terror’, Muslims continue to endure ethnic profiling and are disproportionately subjected to surveillance, limitations on their movements, arrest and deportation.”

The author said that its unfortunate that Muslims are being targeted by European governments with counter-terrorism measures thus reinforcing the racist view that Islam is a ‘threat’, and has successfully created an environment in which making hate speech against Muslims is considered to be normal.

Seyhan said that the target of a discriminatory counter-terrorism measure will result in excessive damage to the psyche of Muslims by causing fear, trauma and anxiety. Such discriminatory approach by European governments has all the potential of hugely impacting with long-lasting effects, including anxiety, psychological distress, depression and diminished self-esteem.

The guide is aimed at encouraging civil society bodies for redoubling their efforts to combat discrimination specifically in the context of counter-terrorism and equipping readers with the tools to challenge systemic racism and threats to religious freedom. The guide has also recommended a major rethink on how to effectively address counter-terrorism measures within the European Union.

Indonesia’s largest shariah-complaint Bank Syariah Indonesia launched

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 07 February 2021 | Posted in , , ,

IMO News Service

Indonesia has given boost to its Islamic finance prospects by launching the country’s largest shariah-complaint Bank Syariah Indonesia. The new bank came into existence after the merger of three top state-owned banks, including Bank Negara Indonesia, Bank Mandiri and Bank Rakyat Indonesia. The new bank immediately after its formation was automatically listed on the Indonesia Stock Exchange.

Bank Syariah Indonesia has now become the country’s seventh-largest bank in terms of assets with an estimated $17.1 billion (240 trillion rupiah). The bank will be operating 1,200 branches across Indonesia, Nikkei Asia reported.

Indonesian President Joko Widodo said, “The country has the world’s largest Muslim population, and it’s high time that Indonesia becomes one of the most advanced countries in terms of Islamic finance and overall shariah economy development. We want to see the bank becoming a global player.”

The government after assessing the large growth opportunities of the country’s expanding middle class and increasing conservatism among its Muslim population had been actively campaigning to boost the shariah economy development in recent years.

It may be noted that Indonesia is currently ranked fourth among Islamic economies, after Malaysia, Saudi Arabia and UAE, according to the annual State of the Global Islamic Economy Report published by DinarStandard in November 2020.

PEOPLE: Dr. Eijaz Ahmed Bhat makes J&K proud with Young Scientist Award

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 05 February 2021 | Posted in , , , , ,

By Danish Ahmad Khan

Dr. Eijaz Ahmed Bhat has been conferred with International Scientist Award (Young Scientist Award) at the 11th International Scientist Awards-2020 for Engineering, Science and Medicine held by VDGOOD TECHNOLOGY FACTORY. Dr. Bhat was also conferred with Young Researcher Award 2020 for his work published in Nature Cell Research by the Institute of Scholars, Bangalore.

Dr. Eijaz Ahmed Bhat is currently working as Postdoctoral fellow in Life sciences Institute, School of Medicine, Zhejiang University, China. He did his Masters in Biochemistry from Aligarh Muslim University (AMU), Department of Biochemistry. He then moved to South Korea for higher studies. He earned his PhD in Biochemistry from Yeungnam University, School of Natural Sciences, Department of Biochemistry, South Korea, in August 2018. Dr. Eijaz was awarded the Yeungnam University Post Graduate Scholarship. He has also served as a Vice president of Yeungnam University International Students Association (YUISA). After completing his doctorate, Dr. Eijaz Ahmed Bhat joined as a postdoctoral research fellow in Zhejiang University, China, Life Sciences Institute, School of Medicine. His research interests include Study of proteins related to various signalling pathways, especially TRAF signaling; and Apoptosis, inflammation and other pathways. He also worked on very important membrane proteins in cell signalling and explored their molecular mechanism of action by using a powerful toll such as Cryo-EM or X-ray crystallography techniques.

Dr. Eijaz has more than 20 publications to his credit in International peer-reviewed journals having high impact factors like Nature Cell Research, Nature Cell Discovery, Scientific Reports, Frontiers in Microbiology, International Journal of Molecular Sciences, International Journal of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry etc. He serves as an editorial board member and reviewer of many reputed journals like Translational Oncology (Elsevier), Cancer Treatment and Communication (Elsevier), Biochemistry and Analytical Biochemistry etc. He is serving as Brand Ambassador of Bentham science publishers in India since 2019.

Early Life and Education

Dr. Eijaz Ahmed Bhat was born and brought up in a small village Kenihama in Budgam district of Jammu & Kashmir. He began his early education at Government Middle School, Kenihama, where he spent four years. His better performance at the school prompted his teachers to advise his parents to send him in the private school called Bright Mission School in Kanipora, one of the leading private schools at that time. He continued to excel in academic and was attracted toward research.

Later, he joined the Government Higher Secondary School in Kanipora. He was considered one of the best students in his school as well as village. He topped in both 9th and 10th standard in his school, and was greatly praised by his for the success. After completing his 10th standard, he again joined a private school called Fayaz Education Higher Secondary School at Faiz Abad Nowgam. He got admission in medical subjects here. He also qualified the Jammu Kashmir Common Entrance Test held in 2007, but later on left it as his interest lay in research field.

Ejaz then decided to go for research in Biochemistry. He gave entrance test in Sri Pratap College, Srinagar (Kashmir Division), and was opted for biochemistry, chemistry and botany subjects in the college. He was considered one of the best students in his college. He profoundly remembers his teachers Mr. Bashir, Mr. Ejaz Rizvi and Dr. Manzoor Lone, who lovingly guided him in every way possible. Apart from studies, Ejaz also actively participated in sports activities, especially volleyball and cricket, in the college.

After completing graduation, he decided to do post-graduation study outside the state. It was quite challenging for him to get a seat in Department of Biochemistry, Aligarh Muslim University, Aligarh. He gave the national level entrance test and got selected achieving 14th rank in biochemistry department, which had only 18 seats. During his post-graduation, Ejaz presented the seminar lectures on the topic Systemic Lupus Erythomatosis (SLE). He also presented the postal presentation on the topic of Alpha 2 Macroglobulin as a drug delivery system. He also represented AMU at many national level conferences and seminars.

At a time when people of Jammu & Kashmir are facing political challenges and being viewed with suspicion for no reasons, Dr. Ejaz Ahmed Bhat has indeed made the nation and his state proud by emerging as a role model and inspiration for the youth. We, at IndianMuslimObserver.com, heartily congratulate for making J&K and India proud. May he continue with his excelling spree in the future as well!

[Danish Ahmad Khan is Founder-Editor of India’s First Online Muslim Newspaper – IndianMuslimObserver.com. He can be reached at indianmuslimobserver@gmail.com]

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