Leading civil rights activist Teesta Seetalvad delivers lecture in AMU
Aligarh: Eminent social activist and Padma Shree Mrs Teesta Seetalvad today delivered a lecture on ‘India’s Preamble, the Equality Challenger-from Electoral to Constitutional Government’ at the Kennedy Auditorium organized by Club for Short Evening Courses, CEC, Aligarh Muslim University.
Addressing the gathering, she asserted that in todayâ€™s India, it is a challenge to bring in a government, which can work on the principles of Indian Constitution.
â€œThe Indian constitution clearly guarantees freedom to different religions, cultures and ethnicities among other freedoms,â€ said Mrs Seetalvad adding that it is time to introspect and see if people are really allowed these freedoms?
Mrs Seetalvad further said that there is a rise in communalism and minorities are insecure. â€œIn this very hard time, a big portion of Indian population has decided to remain silentâ€, said Mrs Seetalvad.
She added this strange silence of people living in Indian metropolitans, small cities and villages during difficult periods when there is communal conflagration is very disturbing.
She also said that it is shocking that generations after generations since the partition of India have been witnessing riots.
â€œI witnessed riots in Gujarat, my elders have witnessed partition and the young generation has gone through the Muzaffarnagar riotsâ€, said Mrs Seetalvad adding that it is high time that principles of constitution are implemented while we elect governments and politicians alleged of hate speeches and communalism are not elected as law makers.
The Aligarh Muslim University, Pro-Vice Chancellor, Brigadier S Ahmad Ali (retd) said that we as Indians have to give up our religious identity to adopt the Indian Identity.
â€œPeople who remain silent when minorities are oppressed should understand that minority appeasement is a farceâ€, said the Pro-Vice Chancellor adding that if minority appeasement was true, then there would have been no need of a Sachar Committee Report.
He further added that thankfully, India still has a silver lining of people like Mrs Seetalvad, who will keep speaking for justice.
â€œAs long as the likes of Mrs Seetalvad are with us, we can always be hopeful for a better futureâ€, said the Pro-Vice Chancellor.
While presiding over the session, Professor Irfan Habib, Professor Emeritus, Department of History, AMU urged the AMU fraternity in particular and the nation in general to support Mrs Seetalvadâ€™s work against communalism and other issues.
He said that lets always remember that during the Gujarat riots, Mrs Seetalvad was helping the victims to rehabilitate despite the fact that the army, police and administration failed to secure lives of minorities during these riots.
While welcoming the guests in the programme, Prof A R Vijapur said that Indians should unite and work together to bring justice, social and economic equality and freedom of thought and expression for the progress of the country in the right direction.
AMU student, Lubna Irfan conducted the programme while Prof Parvez Talib proposed the vote of thanks.