Noted Scholar, Dr Javed Jamil’s much awaited Approach Paper, “Muslim Vision of Secular India: Destination & Roadmap” was unveiled on 21st May 2012 at India Islamic Centre, New Delhi. Releasing the document, Mr K Rahman Khan, Former Deputy Chairman, Rajya Sabha, described the document as the first of its kind in the Post-Independence India, which captures the Muslim vision of the country. He told that it the document was the result of his several rounds of meetings with Dr Javed Jamil. The idea of producing a paper on the line of the Approach Paper for Muslims was discussed and he agreed to write the paper. He said that he had read a paper on the participation of Muslims in Corporate Sector authored by Dr Jamil, and was particularly impressed by his argument that Muslims being large population of consumers must concentrate o entering the corporate sector in a big way. Mr Khan said that Muslims in India are a country within country, and a population of 18 crore requires a separate planning on the line of Planning Commission. By providing the comprehensive document covering every aspect of Muslim role in the country, Dr Jamil has given a historical document. He said that it is high time now a Muslim Planning Council was formed. He indicated that in response to the Vision Document; such a council can soon be floated, which will work as a non-political non-governmental organization.
Speaking on the occasion, Minister of Law and Minority Affairs, Mr Salman Khurshid described the event as historical and wholeheartedly praised the endeavour of Dr Jamil. He said that Sachar Committee showed a part of the picture that was related to the government and Ranganathan Misra Commission made some suggestions. This vision document is an important addition because it focuses on the community effort. If the community has to develop, it will have to work itself for it. Mr Khurshid described how his announcement on reservation was used by different sections as an election ploy. He criticized Election Commission for intervening when there was no reason for this. He said that what he did was based on ground realities and not on the promises that cannot be kept. He challenged the parties that have made big promises to do what they have been telling the people. During his long speech, he looked emotionally charged at the way some people have tried to doubt his intentions. He promised that he would do everything possible within the limits of the constitution for the community. Raising the copy of the Muslim Vision document in his hands, he said that these are the kinds of the works that need to be appreciated and implemented. But he emphasized that the community must take the initiative itself.
Mr Siraj Qureshi described Dr Javed Jamil as a visionary who has given a vision document the like of which has never been produced before. He said that he liked the comprehensiveness of the approach in the paper, particularly Dr Jamil’s theory that wealth generation within the parameters of Islam is a necessary condition for the growth of the community. Zakat and the success of financial Islamic institutions also depends upon the ability to generate wealth, and this dynamic concept of economics given in the approach is to be adopted sooner than later. Mr Qureshi said that the idea of floating a Muslim Chamber of commerce is a great idea. Mr Qureshi hoped that now the whole country will debate the document in its minutest details and then we can come up with a draft of the plan the way Planning Commission plans.
Mr Azeez Burney, renowned journalist, said that the scenario wold change from today. Sachar Committee showed us the problem and Dr Jamil has given us the treatment. Asa good physician, he said, Dr Jamil has not only diagnosed the diseases but jas also given us awonderful prescription. He said that if the people sittig on the dais unite, this vision can turn into reality. He said that Muslims in India are here by choice. Hindus had no other option but to stay here. Muslims had the option to leave but they stayed here. So this country belongs to Muslims more than others.
Mr Akhtaryl Wasey, noted Islamic Scholar, described the document as a historical piece of work which will end the confusion. We will not remain a “confused community” any more but will become a “community with vision”. He said that Dr Jamil deserves applause at the highest level for what he has done. He said that the condition of Muslims in India is like a 12th man, who is regarded a part of the team but has hardly any chance to show his mettle. The twelfth man becomes a man of injured psyche who keeps waiting for an injury to one of the 11players in order to play.
Mr Samar Hamid said that his illustrious father (Syed Hamid) has been very fond of Dr Javed Jamil because he has a broad vision. He said that the type of document he has produces needs huge effort for a long period of time. He said that it was time now that all must put their heads together to start thinking how this can be implemented.
Dr Javed Jamil said that Muslims need to look at their strengths and weaknesses from their own glasses and they have t plan in their own way keeping in mind their strengths and weaknesses. He said that Muslims must become a vibrant and dynamic community that must play a meaningful role in the country. He said that Muslims have three statuses. As a constitutional minority, they deserve all the rights guaranteed in the constitution. As an ideological ethnic class, they are the second largest majority and must learn the ways to act like the second largest majority. They must be able to influence the direction of the national policy. The third status is that they are part of the deprived majority, and it is this status which required biggest emphasis. They must work for the deprived and must fight the forces of economics and their exploitative policies. He told that the document has 20 chapters including religious education, modern education, economic empowerment, health infrastructure, urban development, rural development, NGO sector, media and security. Overall, the document has suggested 170 measures, and he said that even if one tenth of them are taken, a revolution will dawn in India.
Maulana Asrarul Haque Qasmi, MP and renowned Islamic scholar, described the Approach paper as a wonderful work that teaches Muslims the art of living in a secular country. He said that our ultimate vision document is Qur’an, and Dr Jamil has taken the help of that ultimate vision into formulating his Muslim Vision. He said that Dr Jamil has rightly called for a sustained campaign against commercialization of human weaknesses like alcohol, gambling and sex. He said that the time is now changing and Muslims are moving ahead. From today onwards, there will be a new beginning. We have now the Vision before us, and we have to plan a strategy to implement it. He suggested the formation of a counsel and said that the people seated on the dais have good enough capability to usher in a new revolution.
The programme was attended by large number of academicians, media personalities, businessmen and experts. These dignitaries included Mr Rasheed Masood, MP and Mr Mohammad Adeeb. It was telecast live in parts on ETV Urdu. The programme could not begin in time because of the debate going on in parliament that delayed the arrival of all the main guests.