Love Concurs the World. That was the message that rang out at the book release function of the noted writer Asghar Ali Engineer here on Tuesday evening.
Speaker after speaker held forth on the importance of promoting secular thoughts, peace and harmony.
They praised Mr. Engineer's autobiography ‘A Living Faith' for championing liberal and secular values.
In his brief address, Mr. Engineer said religion does not have to divide people. A true follower of religion had the qualities of truth, humility and compassion. “Unfortunately, we are neglecting what is here,” he said pointing to the heart.
Mr. Engineer, who is known for leading Dawoodi Bohra reform movement, said he was deeply influenced by Sufism which advocated love for all.
He regretted that instead of pursuing power of humanity, everyone was after politics of power.
Mr. Engineer's book chronicles his struggle against the orthodox Bohra priesthood and also depicts the personal, social and political events that shaped his life and views.
Noted scientist P.M. Bhargava, who released the book, described Mr. Engineer as a messiah of peace. His autobiography brought out the similarities between Islam and Marxism and gave a clear definition of communalism.
Prof. Haragopal said the book was actually an autobiography of secularism in post-Independent India. Mr. Engineer personified courage of conviction and honesty of purpose.
Prof. Susie Tharu recalled how Mr. Engineer faced several attacks from members of his community for taking up reform movement.
Prof. Javed Alam and IPS officer V.N. Rai also spoke. Mazher Hussain, Director Cova chaired the session.