Afghan by birth, Indian by heart

Syed Qudrat.  M.A. SRIRAM

Syed Qudrat. M.A. SRIRAM

Coming from trouble-torn Afghanistan where peace has been no more than a pause between two wars in the last few decades, Sayed Qudrat epitomises how education can transform people’s perception and is important to usher in stability to a country besides promoting the individual’s well-being.

Sayed Qudrat came to Mysuru in 2012 and was little exposed to the world outside and his basic education till class 12 was only in Pashto, the official language in Afghanistan.

Five years later, not only did he acquire a decent command over English to deliver a speech, but he ended up securing the 1st rank in BA, LLB from JSS Law College (Autonomous). The graduation day was on Saturday.

But, above gaining mastery over a new language or topping the course: his perception of the world has changed.

Speaking to The Hindu, Sayed Qudrat spoke of his early years in Afghanistan and the transformation on coming to India. “I studied in Rehman Baba school in Kabul. When studying in Afghanistan, I used to think only of my country and Islam. Having come to India and on completion of my education, I think only of humanity. We should transcend religion and think of humanity,” says Sayed Qudrat, while expressing his thanks to the Indian government.

His education in India was made possible by the Government of India’s policy of offering scholarship to 1,000 Afghan students every year to facilitate their study in India.

Recalling his school days, he seemed to hint that life was “normal” in Kabul after the fall of the Taliban in 2001 and there was no trouble. “Kabul is peaceful after 2001, but in rural areas and some provinces there is trouble with Pakistan supporting the terrorists,” he says. But, education has widened his horizon and Sayed Qudrat now plans to go to the United Kingdom for higher studies.

After accepting the scroll of honour, Sayed Qudrat got an ovation when he declared “By birth I am an Afghan, but by heart I am an Indian.”

In all, 109 students passed their courses of whom 16 were rank-holders.

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Printable version | May 20, 2022 12:12:06 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/afghan-by-birth-indian-by-heart/article19096586.ece