Afroz Alam Sahil, BeyondHeadlines
Mumbai: “Stock market welcomes Muslims with open hands, I urge the community to come and try various financial tool.” This was how the Deputy CEO, Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), Ashish Chauhan expressed BSE’s priority. He was speaking at the award ceremony of TwoCircles.net (TCN) on theme-Towards Economic Empowerment of Mulsims (Beyond Sachar) organized at Taj President, Mumbai on Saturday 17th Dec.
“The BSE is for all and it is not fair to state that Muslims do not actively participate in stock market. In over a century old history of stock exchange in the country, only a minuscule population of the country participates in it,” said Mr. Chauhan. He, however, appealed to the Muslims to come ahead and invest in various financial tools which are available in the stock market.
Chauhan also cited several examples of Muslims who are doing fine in the stock market. “We have several brokers who are Muslims and are doing great business. The scenario is changing and things will be better in coming days,” said Chauhan.
Dr. Abusaleh Shariff, Chief Economist, National Council of Applied Economic Research(NCAER), asked the Indian Muslims to confidently take up the path of national mainstream and carve their own path in sync with the country’s development. Shariff who is also a member of Sachar Committee also depicted the sorry state of affairs prevalent in the Muslim community. “It is sad that Muslims are not part of the growth which our country is witnessing. They should also take advantage of the country’s multifaceted growth for their upliftment,” he remarked.
CEO, Threshold India, Shahid Syed in his inspiring address urged the Muslim community to break the cocoon around them. “Muslims should shed the thought they have to die soon and the guilty feeling towards possessing money. It is good to be rich and one should strive for that. It is better to lend that demand,” he opined.
MD and CEO, National Spot Exchange Limited, Anajani Sinha received a warm response as he greeted the audience with a ‘Salam Alaikum’. Dwelling on the opportunities of Islamic investors in commodity market, Sinha gave good examples of investment in coomodity exchange market. The new e-gold and e-silver products were explained by him in detail. “A person can register himself as a client with a memeber of National Spot Exchange by having a demat accounut. He does so by buying online or by contacting the broker. Believe me it is all within the framework of Islamic Shariah,” he remarked clearing the air.
Eminent expert on micro-finance and Founder BASICX, Mr. Vijay Mahajan advocated for financial tools which are in sync with Islamic shariah. Mr. Mahajan aptly presented the cases of micro-finance where small families prospered with loans of small amount. The micro-credit under Mahajan has expanded to over 450 crores. He also stated that Muslims are very much part of his financial instrument. “Nearly 12 percent of the people who have benefitted from micro-credit in our schemes are Muslims,” he said.
Another expert on Shariah compliant financial instrument and MD, Taurus, Mr. Waqar Naqvi, however, lamented that Muslims are not coming forward for the Shariah compliant instruments. “We had enough of media coverage, it is now known to everybody still we are not getting the desired response. But there is hope and in coming years we are sure to succeed with more participation from Muslims,” he said.
Luminaries, philanthropist, activists figured in the awardee list during the TCN annual award function held at Taj President, Mumbai on Saturday.Personalities who had done yeomen service for the community and country were honored with guiding star award by TCN. The list included Abdul Quadir Fazlani of Mumbai who had spearheaded an education programme in Mumbai. Setting up primary schools, teacher’s training schools and other vocational centres, Fazlani now runs two trusts which govern these educational institutions.
Highlighting the importance of education for the Muslim community, Fazlani said, “There is only one word-Education, which can change the scenario for Muslims. I urge everyone here present to strive hard for upliftment of education level in the society,” said Fazlani.
Another guiding star, Dr MA Patankar narrated his experiences. “After 1992 riots I had taken up the cudgles against poor education level in the Muslim community. We started with few schools and now there are hundreds of schools which are being funded by the community,” he said.
TCN Person of the Year 2011
TCN awarded Faisal Khan, the social activist who had revived ‘Khudai Khidmatgar’ with the ‘TCN Person of the Year’. In his address, Faisal justified the revival of Khudai Khidmatgar which was established by Frontier Gandhi. “Being an activist it was perceived that you have to be a Gandhian or a leftist but now I have proved that Muslims can also be social activist. We also love our country and are concerned about it,” he said.
The brain behind TASIS, Dr Shariq Nisar stated that his endeavour is only to give an opportunity to Muslims where they can invest and participate within the gambit of shariah and country’s legal framework.