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Arab, India experts gather at Jamia to discuss future of Arabic language

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About 60 scholars and experts of Arabic language from India and Saudi Arabia gathered at Jamia Millia Islamia today as part of a week-long programme to discuss future of Arabic language and problems faced by it.

The event was inaugurated by Ambassador of the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia, Dr. Saud bin Mohammed AlSati. Jamia Vice Chancellor Prof Talat Ahmad presided over the function which was attended by Ambassadors of many Arab countries in India, senior faculty members and students of Jamia.

It has been jointly organised by Department of Arabic, Jamia, King Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz International Centre for the Arabic Language, Riyadh, KSA in collaboration with the Cultural Attaché office, the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in India and All India Association of Arabic Teachers and Scholars.

Speaking on the occasion, Vice Chancellor Prof Ahmad said Arabic is being taught in the University from day one of its inception 96 years ago.

Stating that universities from India and Arab countries have been collaborating in the teaching of Arabic language and Islamic studies for a long time, he underlined the need for collaboration between JMI and Saudi universities in the fields of science and research.

Prof Ahmad said more than 400 foreign students were studying at JMI which has been recently ranked sixth among the central universities and 12th among 750 universities in India.

He said it was a great honour for Jamia to host such an event in collaboration with King Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz International Centre for the Arabic Language, Riyadh.

The Saudi Ambassador expressed happiness over the conference being held at Jamia, which he said was visited by the late king Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz in 2006.

Lauding the contribution of Indian scholars for the promotion of the Arabic language, the Ambassador said many Arab students and scholars are now coming to India for Islamic studies.

He said Arab scholar Abu Rayhan Muhamad ibn Al Biruni studied Indian culture and wrote Kitab Tarikh Al Hind,in 1030 after exploring the Hindu faith in India. This book, he said is an important source to know the old India civilisation.

Talking about Indo-Saudi ties, he said after the visit of the late king it had strengthened significantly. It has further been cemented with the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Saudi Arabia in 2016.

Besides the Ambassador and the Vice Chancellor others who spoke at the inaugural function were President of King Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz International Centre for the Arabic Language Dr Abdullah Saleh Al Washmi, President of All India Arabic Scholars and Teachers Prof Noman Khan, Editor of Milli Gazette Zafarul Islam Khan and Head of the Arabic Department, JMI, Prof Mohammad Ayub Nadwi. Prof Habibullah Nadwi the department is coordinating the programme.

The event began with a two-day international seminar on “Arabic language in India: Past, Present and Future” .
It will be followed by a two-day workshop on teaching of Arabic language: methods and problems and editing of language manuscripts from April 18.

On April 20th, a seminar will be organized showcasing the efforts made by Saudi Arabia and King Abdullah Centre for Arabic Language in the promotion of Arabic Language.

An oratory competition in Arabic language will be held on April 21. An exhibition on Arabic heritage is also being organised on the occasion.

Arabic scholars from 26 universities including from Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Jammu and Kashmir, Tamil Nadu and Kerala are participating in the week-long “programme under the month of Arabic language in India.”

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