KARAK - Speakers at a webinar here yesterday underlined the role mosques, prayer leaders and re­ligious scholars can play in pro­moting tolerance, peaceful co­existence, interfaith as well as inter-sect harmony and inclu­siveness in the society in these challenging times.

Under the Paigham-e-Paki­stan initiative of the govern­ment of Pakistan, a plan had been chalked out to take prayer leaders of different schools of religious thought onboard in the mission of spreading the mes­sage of peace, unity and har­mony in the country from the pulpit. Under the initiative, an awareness campaign had been launched from Faisalabad, and four different awareness ses­sions have already been organ­ized in Faisalabad, Chiniot, Jhang and Toba Tek Singh.

Taking forward this initiative, a webinar titled ‘Mimber-o-Mihr­ab: Role of Mosques, Madaris and Ulema in Peace building’ was organized by the Madrassah Tadrees-ul-Quran Karak in col­laboration with the University of Science and Technology, Kohat, and Paigham-e-Pakistan.

Dr Qaiser Bilal from Depart­ment of Islamic Education, Uni­versity of Science and Technology, Kohat, Maulana Akhtar Zaman, Mufti Abdur Raheem, Maulana Farmanullah, Hafiz Abdullah, Qari Basit Khattak, Asmatullah, Adil Jaan, Muhammad Ziaullah from Saudi Arabia and Nasir Ahmed Arif from Sweden were promi­nent among those who participat­ed in the virtual session.

In his address, Hafiz Abdul­lah highlighted the role Ulema can play in spreading the mes­sage of peace and harmony to every nook and corner, as well as countering the extremist ideol­ogies which encourage violence and terrorism in the society in the name of Islam.

He urged the Ulema to exhibit best moral character and spread the message of peace through their sermons.

Dr Qaiser Bilal threw light on the Paigham-e-Pakistan decree endorsed by 5,000 Ulema of all schools of thought. He said the narrative teaches peace, har­mony and unity among differ­ent sects. He said the virus of ex­tremism is more dangerous than coronavirus. He said every ef­fort should be made to uproot the virus of extremism and ter­rorism from the society. He said the country is currently passing through a very difficult time and that everyone should acknowl­edge his duties towards the na­tion and the country and play his part to overcome this unprece­dented challenge.

Dr Qaiser said the terrorist organizations are trying to use coronavirus crisis for their vest­ed interests. He said amid the lockdown and closure of offic­es and businesses, people spend most of their time on internet these days. He said the terror­ist organizations are spread­ing negative propaganda on so­cial media, which has become a cyber-security challenge for Pa­kistan. He said these anti-state elements want to weaken the country by promoting extrem­ism, sectarianism and hatred, and stressed the need to educate people according to the teach­ings of Islam, which preaches peace, religious tolerance and equality and has nothing to do with the menaces of terrorism and extremism.

He said Ulema and religious clerics to fulfil their responsi­bilities by making people realise their religious as well as nation­al obligations. He also stressed the need to strengthen religious seminaries in the country by equipping those with state-of-the-art technologies and mod­ern education system with a view to turn madaris into a place spreading the message of equal­ity, justice, peace and harmony.

The overseas participants ap­preciated the efforts of the or­ganisers of the webinar and pledged their all-out support to promote Paigham-e-Pakistan’s message of peace and unity at the international level.