Two-day seminar on Pir Abu Bakar Siddique begins in Aliah University

By TCN News

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Kolkata: A two-day international seminar on Pir Abu Bakar Siddique and the Socio-Religious Reforms Movements in South Asia was inaugurated at Aliah University (Park Circus Campus), on Saturday, January 14.

Pir Abu Bakar Siddique (died 1939) was a great Sufi saint, social and religious reformer of 19th century Bengal based at Furfura Sharif, a popular Sufi shrine of Bengal.

The inaugural session of the seminar, which will continue tomorrow, began with the recitation of the Holy Quran. The opening remarks was given by Pir Allama Saifuddin Siddique, educationist and eldest grandson of Pir Abu Bakar Siddique. In his opening remarks he elaborated on the philosophical aspects of Sufism and contributions of Pir Abu Baakr Siddique in the social and religious reformation of Muslim in the undivided Bengal.

Professor Sugata Bose, Professor of History at Harvard University, USA and the Member of Parliament (Lok Sabha) delivered the inaugural address. Prof. Bose elaborated on the topic, “Muslim society and modern education “. He categorically mentioned about the relevance and contributions of Pir Abu Bakar Siddique in reforming rural Bengali Muslim community in South Asia. Contributions made by Pir Abu Bakar Siddique in the field of education was certainly exceptional. He has established hundreds of educational institutions in the remote countryside of Bengal.

Syed Md. Bahauddin, seminar convener, later introduced the theme of the seminar. He said “Pir Abu Bakar Siddique is one of the most influential persona on the history of modern South Asia. He was not only a popular Sufi saint but also a freedom fighter, educationist, and social reformer of undivided Bengal.”

Prof. Amit Dey of Calcutta University Chaired the inaugural address. This is the first international seminar on the contributions of Pir Abu Bakar Siddique in post-independent West Bengal. Eminent academicians from leading universities of the world are presenting their research papers exploring different aspects of the theme in the academic sessions of the two days seminar.

Professor Tony K. Stewart (Vanderbilt University, USA), Professor Margaret Hunt (Uppsala University, Sweden) Professor Dietrich Reetz (Freie University, Germany), Professor Brian Hatcher (Tufts University, USA) Professor Gamal Farouk Gebril (Al-Azhar University, Cairo) Professor Tanika Sarkar (JNU) Soumitra Dastidar (columnist and documentary maker) and many other academicians are participating in this seminar.