India shows different religions can co-exist, says Iranian President

India shows different religions can co-exist, says Iranian President

HYDERABAD: Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, during an event in Hyderabad, said that India is a living example of peaceful co-existence of people of different religions and ethnicities.

Rouhani asked for unity between Shias and Sunnis and said that Iran is seeking brotherly relations with all the Muslim nations, including India. He also added that there can be no military solution to conflicts.

Rouhani is currently on a three-day visit to India and attended an event in Hyderabad on Thursday, where he addressed Muslim leaders and scholars from different Islamic schools of thought.

In his half-an-hour long speech in Persian, Hassan Rouhani talked about how the West has ruined relationships between Shias and Sunnis. He alleged that the West created a rift among Muslims by instigating certain groups and outfits.

“They portray themselves as Islamic groups but we call them ‘takfiri’. All those who follow ‘qibla’ (the direction in which Muslims offer namaz) and believe that there is no god but Allah and Mohammad is His last messenger are living together as brothers,” he said.

India proves different people can co-exist

“India is a living museum of different ethnicities and religions peacefully co-existing. This process is going on for centuries. Shia, Sunnis, Sufis, Hindus, Sikhs and others are living together. They together built their country and built their civilisation,” Rouhani said.

Rouhani said that Indian and Iran have relations beyond politics and economics. He also added that both countries share the same historical roots.

Rouhani, on behalf of Tehran, said that the country is expecting more cordial and closer relations with India. The Iranian leader said his country was ready to help countries like Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and Yemen.

Claiming that Iran in recent years made efforts to end conflicts and bloodshed in the region, he said that his country plans to enhance brotherhood with all Muslim nations and countries of the region.

“Iran is not seeking any discord with other Muslim countries who have age-old relations with us. We believe that in case of differences, bullet is the not the solution. Dialogue and logic are the tools at our disposal to overcome the differences. There is no military solution. The solution has to be political,” said Rouhani.

West has created a rift among Muslims

Rouhani talked how Shias, Sunnis, Kurds and Christians lived together in Iraq and Syria until the West created a rift there.

“We want to spread peace and also engage in dialogue while defending our rights. In case of need, we do believe in resistance and steadfastness,” he told IANS.

Hassan Rouhani said that there are enemies of Islam who are trying to portray Islam as a ‘religion of violence’.

“The fact is that Islam is a religion of moderation, tolerance and forgiveness,” he said, quoting Prophet Mohammad. He also said all Muslim communities should eradicate evils and help people irrespective of their faith.

Rouhani said, “While during industrialisation, the West plundered the mineral resources of the East and in the current age of technology, it is trying to plunder their culture and beliefs.”

We must go back to ‘real’ Islam

He talked about how humanity will only exist if people return to the ‘real’ Islam. Rouhani also said that education is a must for the youth. He said youth must be taught the teachings of Quran and Prophet Mohammed properly.
Rouhani explained how the Islam does not merely focus on issues of individual or family but it has the power to manage society, politics, international relations, judicial issues and social affairs. Islam has rules and regulations for running affairs of the society, he said.

With inputs from IANS

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