KARACHI- Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) Chief Altaf Hussain has said that Islam is the religion of peace, security, and it teaches dignity to mankind but its image was being blemished by the activities of a handful of extremist elements throughout the world. He said, “I want to stop bloodshed, ravaging, violence and use of force in the name of Islam. I am not arguing the case of the Shias or Sunnis. I want dignity and sanctity for the lives of the Muslims and followers of all other faiths and religions by following the teachings of Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH).”He said this at the inaugural session of the newly formed Muttahida Bainul Muslimeen Forum held at the MQM Head Office Nine Zero. Prominent religious scholars belonging to different schools of thought, members of the Coordination Committee and the Ulema Committee of the MQM were also present on the occasion. He said that Islam is the religion of peace and security, and the teachings of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) do not talk about striking off the heads of the followers of other religions. On the contrary, he had expressed his displeasure over the killing of an infidel during a war after he had recited the kalima to save his life. He did not even like tormenting a non-Muslim without any cause. Altaf Hussain further said that the Holy Prophet (PBUH) was sent as a mercy for both the worlds and his entire life was filled with examples of showing compassion to the people and helping the people in need. He won the hearts of the infidels with his sublime character. It is highly unfortunate that the noble face of Islam is being smeared today by a handful of extremist elements that were killing non-Muslims and even slaying the followers of the Shia school of thought by declaring them heretics. These senseless killings were giving the world an excuse for presenting a distorted picture of Islam. Being a Muslim has been made a crime, and they are filed into separate lines at international airports.“It is our sincere effort that the Ulema and the general public frustrate the conspiracies for sectarian killings and uproot hatred and bigotry from the country by getting united. Islam should be brought before the world in the light of true facets of the exalted and noble life of the Holy Prophet (PBUH).”“We do not want the followers of any school of thought to renounce their beliefs and adopt something new. We want them to show respect and dignity to the followers of other schools of thought by remaining firmly established in their own beliefs. Decisions of the heavenly bliss and eternal perdition should be should be left to Allah, who is the Owner of the Day of the Judgement.”“If lives of innocent and guiltless people are saved because of my efforts, whatever religion or school of thought they belong, I would consider that the real teachings of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) have been enforced.”Altaf Hussain said that the news of including hateful content about the non-Muslims in the textbooks was disturbing. He said that according to the report published by the National Commission for Justice and Peace, there has been a significant increase in the hateful contents in the textbooks being used by school and college students. Many non-Muslims scholars and educationists have also expressed their concerns on it. We should think seriously about it as it would have adverse effects on the outlook of the students towards non-Muslims. He warned that it was a grave issue, and the authorities concerned must take serious notice of it.He congratulated the Ulema on the formation of Muttahida Bainul Muslimeen Forum and praised their efforts for bringing sectarian harmony and religious tolerance in difficult times. He prayed Allah to give courage to the Ulema to pursue their noble work. Maulana Tanvirul Huq Thanvi, Allama Abbas Kumaili, Allama Ali Karrar Naqvi, Maulana Ameer Abdullah Farooqi, Dr Amir Abdullah, Allama Azhar Naqvi, Mirza Yousuf and Dr Jameel Rathore spoke with Altaf Hussain. They praised his practical efforts for maintaining sectarian harmony and religious tolerance. They also congratulated him on the formation of the forum.