13-DEC-2016: The Department of Sunni Theology, Aligarh Muslim University recently organised a Workshop on 'The status of Aimmah-e-Masajid and their Responsibilities' at the Central Hall of the Faculty of Theology.
While attending the inaugural function of the programme as the Chief Guest, Professor Masood Ahmad said that the role of a Mosque's Imam besides leading the congregational prayers is also to serve as a member of the larger leadership team in a Muslim community. He added that the Imam's counselling may be sought in personal and religious.
"The imam may be involved in visiting the sick, engaging in inter-faith service programs, officiating marriages, organizing educational gatherings in the Mosque and educating and reforming the youth," said Prof Ahmad.
Professor Abdur Raheem Kidwai, who also attended the function as the Chief Guest pointed out how growing numbers of Mosques in Europe and USA are contributing to their societies by integrating people from diverse backgrounds while providing a common platform for discussing issues.
He added that the Mosques and Imams in the western countries are talking about creating societies with more openness, more religious and racial tolerance, and equal treatment of all religious communities.
While presiding over the function, AMU Vice Chancellor, Lt General Zameer Uddin Shah (Veteran) said that he recently read the last sermon of Prophet Muhammad (Peace be Upon Him), in which the Holy Prophet has urged Muslims not to be divided in sects and asked them to have societies with equal rights for men and women and to stay away from usury. He added that it is imperative for Muslims to not have differences within themselves and to contribute to their societies in the best possible ways.
The Vice Chancellor in the conclusion of his address also promised that the coming financial year will have a special focus on the University's Department of Theology.
AMU Registrar, Prof Javaid Akhtar threw light on how Mosques contribute in the betterment of society. He said that Islam prompted mankind to learn and thus, from the beginning of Islamic history, the 'Islamic Mosque' became the centre of learning.
He also pointed out that since mosques are suppose to spread learning in society, the Imam's should be instrumental in bringing reforms. He also said that world, still looks up to mosques and Imam's to contribute for the betterment.
Meanwhile, Professor Abdul Khaliq, Dean, Faculty of Theology said that there is no doubt that Imam's and mosques have important roles to play in societies, but at the same time it is the duty of every individual to represent religion in the best ways by simply becoming honest, truthful, pious, rational and tolerant. He added that if these qualities and imbibed in a society there will be no injustice and no corruption.
While welcoming the guests at the function, Prof Tauqeer Alam also talked about the importance of offering Salah. He pointed out that Salah is the one of the five pillars of Islam and Muslims should not avoid it.
Dr Mohd Nasir conducted the programme, which was attended by teachers, students and scholars from various departments and faculties.