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Jamia ‘lets’ down Frontier Gandhi

Some Urdu lovers who turned up at Jamia Millia Islamia on Tuesday to be part of the Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan Annual Memorial lecture and an exhibition on his life were upset at not finding any of his messages in Urdu.

An Urdu lover on the condition of anonymity said the event was well held but what went missing was Ghaffar Khan’s message in Urdu from the place highlighting the university’s continued neglect towards the language.

It is to be noted that Urdu is getting a short shrift in its bastion as the university has a website updating information in English and it is getting ready to prepare a Hindi website too. But there is no mention of a website providing university information in Urdu.

The only good thing that has taken place after years is that the university has started issuing releases in Urdu regularly that are also updated on its social media platforms.

Rajmohan Gandhi delivered a talk at Jamia on February 21, at 3.00 pm at the university’s Naom Chomsky Complex.

The Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan Annual Memorial lecture has been instituted by the Centre for the Study of Social Exclusion and Inclusive Policy, JMI, according to university release issued earlier.

Marking the occasion, Prof. Talat Ahmad, Vice Chancellor JMI shall unveil a portrait of Ghaffar Khan along with Mahatma Gandhi in the Library of the Centre.

An exhibition on the life and times of Ghaffar Khan for which the Centre has collaborated with the Nehru Museum and Memorial Library will also be opened by the VC-JMI.

Rajmohan Gandhi, grandson of Mahatma Gandhi who has done a book on Ghaffar Khan, shall deliver his introductory lecture on Badshah Khan’s life, works and contributions to freedom movement.

A close associate of Mahatma Gandhi and a votary of non-violence, Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan also known as Badshah Khan was born in 1890. After partition, he spent more than 27 years in prison in his pursuit of Pakhtun autonomy, peace, and non-violence.

Khan visited India many a times as state guest and was conferred by the Indian government with its highest civilian award, the Bharat Ratna in 1987.

Rajmohan Gandhi, author of Ghaffar Khan: Nonviolent Badshah of the Pakhtuns will offer insights into the life and achievements of the Frontier Gandhi. Drawing close parallels with the life of Mahatma Gandhi, his ‘brother in spirit’, Rajmohan looks at Ghaffar Khan with the spectacles of today rather than those of 1947, emphasizing that for people in the twenty-first century who live in the shadow of September 9/11, Badshah Khan’s unwavering commitment to non-violence and Hindu-Muslim unity offers valuable lessons.

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