Seminar on Islamic culture and art inaugurated by Hamid Ansari

Hyderabad, December 31: The seminar entitled ‘Islamic Culture and Art’ was inaugurated by vice-president Mohammed Hamid Ansari here on Friday. Addressing a gathering of delegates, academics and students, Ansari said, “Islam has been a part of the Indian landscape for well over a millennium and has impacted on, and been impacted upon, in very many layers. A very good reason for it is the unique nature of the Indian culture.” The seminar commenced with the recitation of verses from the Quran emphasising the importance of learning.

Describing Islamic art and culture as non-religion centric, governor E S L Narasimhan said, “The Islamic art and culture, devoid of symbolism, has drawn inspiration from nature itself. For this very reason Islamic art and culture is an important source of historiography.” Acknowledging the contribution of the Mughals in bringing Islamic culture to the fore, Narasimhan noted, “Islamic art and culture has come to occupy the centre stage, seamlessly woven in the cultural fabric of our nation and tradition.” The arch and dome used by the Mughals was distinct from Indian architecture, he said.

Painting and calligraphy were other areas of excellence. Quoting Annamarie Schimmel, Ansari said, “The Mogul style developed from the interaction of the refined Persian style and the strong, lively, vision of the Hindu artists.” Illustrating the tolerance and pluralistic nature of Muslim rulers during the medieval ages, Ansari said, “The State was not theocratic notwithstanding the fact that the rulers in Delhi and other kingdoms were Muslims.

Governance was conducted through state-made regulations and not on the principles of sharia (Islamic law).” The seminar will witness paper and poster presentations along with technical sessions on ‘Islam and Pluralistic Society’, ‘Islamic Architecture’ and ‘Islamic Art and Calligraphy’.