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HindustanTimes Thu,28 Aug 2014

Ahmadiyya convention pitches for interfaith bonding

HT Correspondent , Hindustan Times   Qadian (Gurdaspur), December 29, 2013
First Published: 19:44 IST(29/12/2013) | Last Updated: 19:46 IST(29/12/2013)

The concluding day of the annual convention of the Ahmadiyya community on Sunday was dedicated to discussions on as how to strengthen bonding among the people of different faiths.

Commonalities between various religions were also taken up during the convention and the founders of all faiths were praised.

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Delegates representing Hinduism, Islam, Sikhism and Christianity addressed the gathering. They spoke at length about the need for peace in society and appreciated the contribution of the Ahmadiyyas to society.

The session began with the recitation of the Quran and was chaired by Shareef Ahmad Odah.

Notable scholars, political and religious leaders from different parts of India attended the conference. Amongst them were Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) president Avtar Singh Makkkar, Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) chief Partap Singh Bajwa, former minister and senior SAD leader Sewa Singh Sekhwan, Sant Baba Daljeet Singh Bakshish Dham, BJP leader Master Mohan Lal, former Punjab minister Sucha Singh Chhotepur, Sant Baba Baljeet Singh Daduwal, former Gujarat minister Girish Parmar, Amritsar vice-bishop Sohan Masih and Chetna Manch convener Swami Sawrupanand among others.

SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar lauded the Ahmadiyya community for providing a common platform to the representatives of all faiths to express their commitment to spread the message of love and peace. He said Sikhism was based on the principle of welfare of mankind.

State health minister Surjeet Kumar Jayani praised the community's efforts towards world peace and brotherhood. Sewa Singh Sekhwan conveyed his greetings to the community and offered to join hands with it for a noble cause.

Sant Baba Diljeet Singh said unity could not be observed until we tried to reform ourselves. He said one should make an effort to fight against all the evils in the society.

Sucha Singh Chhotepur greeted the participants on the occasion. He said the followers of a true religion must share the joys and sorrows of others.

Girish Parmar said all religions talked of being friends and that all should endeavour to uproot hatred from the society and promote peace in the world.

Apurva Kumar Sen, editor, Grameen Samwad appreciated the community's efforts to establish peace and interfaith harmony.

Sohan Masih, vice-bishop, Amritsar, said the world is in a dire need of unity which could not be observed unless we establish peace. Hones, a Norwegian, said he learnt about the Ahmadiyya community via internet and came to Qadian to attend the gathering.

Gurdaspur MP and PPCC president Partap Singh Bajwa said the community's message of peace was worth appreciating.

"A day will come when Pakistani delegates will come to Qadian without requiring any visa. Likewise, we may visit Pakistan without facing any problems," he said.

Nirmalia Peeth head Sawrupanand expressed his wishes for the community.

Those present

Notable among those who attended the convention were PPCC chief Partap Singh Bajwa, Punjab health minister Surjeet Kumar Jayani, SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkkar, former minister and senior SAD leader Sewa Singh Sekhwan, BJP leader Master Mohan Lal, former minister Sucha Singh Chhotepur, Sant Baba Baljeet Singh Daduwal and former Gujarat minister Girish Parmar.

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