Lucknow: The need for education and employment for Muslims was today highlighted at RSS-backed conference of Ulemas here, which also cautioned the people of the community against being used to "boost" political ambitions of a handful leaders.
The All India Ulema Conference called by RSS-backed Muslim Rashtriya Manch (MRM) also deliberated on terrorism and communal riots. It asserted that terrorism has nothing to do with Islam which was being defamed in the name of 'Jihad'.
All Indian Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) and Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind (JUH) did not participate in the event.
Kendriya Pracharak of Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh Indresh Kumar emphasised that it was high time that the message of Prophet Muhammad for peace was propagated across the globe and asked the Muslims of India to a play a key role in it.
Addressing the meet, Manch convenor Mohd Afzal said all sects of Muslims, whether Deobandi, Shia, Sunni or Barelvi were on one platform.
"Terrorism has nothing to do with Islam and Muslims would not remain a vote bank," he said, and asked Muslims to follow the ideals of former President APJ Abdul Kalam.
Hazrat Maulana Qasim said Islam was being defamed in the name of 'Jihad' by those who do not know its meaning.
"Jihad means spreading light. It is a fight against darkness," he said at the meeting where no prominent Muslim leader from the state capital was present.
Maulana Ibrahim from Karnataka said no person was a Muslim only by name. He said those acting against humanity could not be true Muslims.
Maulana Haider alleged that politicians provoked Muslims against RSS and Hindus against minorities.
Senior RSS functionary Kunar said that Muslims would live and die for India.
"Now Muslims will lay down their lives for motherland (India) and not for any other country," Kumar said. He said India has to be made free from terror, riots, violence and hatred.
Kumar said a number of riots took place in the country, killing scores of people, but nothing has been achieved.
"We are still far away from employment, education and progress. Are we here only to boost political ambitions of a handful leaders," the RSS leader asked.
Without naming ruling Samajwadi Party, he alleged that a particular political party considered Muslims as their vote bank, but it would not be so any longer.
Kumar said the manner in which people raised Quit India slogan in 1942 against British rule, they should give a message of terror, riot, violence and hatred-free India.
When Kumar arrived at the venue, some Muslim youths tried to show black flags and raised slogans. The conference was attended by around 1,200 Ulemas.