Terrorists harming Islam’s message: Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi

New¬† Delhi: As terror struck Paris, India on Saturday said radicalism is a “great challenge” to the Islamic world as some misguided people were harming Islam’s real message of mercy and peace and exhorted Imams and other religious leaders world over to deal with the problem.

Addressing an international conference on religious discourse, Minister of State for Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said the Islamic world should unite against the forces of terrorism and radicalism which are the “greatest enemies” of humanity and Islam.

He pitched for reforms in religious discourse, saying Muslims need “new vision and a comprehensive understanding” of the religion of Islam and guard against “misinterpretation” of Quran’s teachings.

“This is the time for introspection and self-correction. Time has come to think and change the religious discourse and dispel the misconceptions about Islam,” he told the 25th International Conference on Religious Discourse Reforms in Egypt’s Luxor.

“Terrorism and radicalism are the greatest enemies of entire humanity and Islam. Acts of some misguided people are harming Islam’s real message of mercy, unity, peace, brotherhood,” Naqvi said at the meet attended by Imams, religious leaders, intellectuals and ministers from about 42 countries to discuss the global challenge of terrorism.

He said Imams, religious leaders and other scholars have a great role to play against global challenges of terrorism and

radicalism. “Coordination and communication among society, religious leaders, government agencies and media is a must to fight those misusing religion for terrorism,” he added.

His statement assumes added significance as Paris was hit by a series of terror attacks last night in which over 120 people were killed and several injured. Radical Islamic group ISIS has claimed responsibility for the attacks.

The minister said religious discourse needs reforms which “assumes significance in the current political, social and ideological scenario across the world and it should not be interpreted as attempts to change or alter a religion.”