Published: 19th August 2020
BJP seeks action against Aligarh Muslim University over webinar on Khilafat movement
BJP leaders have written to the Ministry of Education demanding action against the university. The BJP has alleged that the AMU was a threat to the country's "internal security"
The Aligarh unit of the BJP has sought action against the Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) which recently organised a webinar to discuss the Khilafat movement.
BJP leaders have written to the Ministry of Education demanding action against the university. The BJP has alleged that the AMU was a threat to the country's "internal security".
According to reports, the webinar was conducted on August 13 and a Turkish professor also took part in the discussion on the movement. The webinar was presided over by AMU's Vice-Chancellor (VC) and the keynote speaker was a Turkish professor named H Hilal Sahin.
The Khilafat movement was a protest campaign launched by Muslims to influence the British government and protect the Ottoman Caliphate after the defeat of Turkey in World War I. It also had the support of Mahatma Gandhi. BJP's former media spokesperson Nishit Sharma said strict action should be taken against the AMU V-C and organisers of the event.
"The webinar details should be looked into by an Inquiry Committee as the matter is related to internal security. AMU invited Sahin to express her views on the Khilafat movement despite knowing that Turkey supports Pakistan and opposes India in every decision, including the revocation of Jammu & Kashmir's special status in August last year," Sharma said.
BJP's District Vice-President Gaurav Sharma also claimed that the Khilafat movement was responsible for division of the country and "massacre across the world". "There is now some network which is working to revive this movement and organising such webinars in the AMU signal that preparation is being made for Khilafat 2.0 movement," he added.
Manvendra Pratap Singh, member of National Monitoring Committee for minority educational institutes and also the BJP's Vice-President for Braj region, said, "It is unfortunate that a Turkish professor was invited for the webinar in AMU despite the fact that Turkey has opposed India multiple times. The initiative is aimed at restarting the Khilafat movement which amounts to treason."
AMU Proctor Prof Wasim Ali, however, said, "The Turkish professor was a speaker because she is an expert on Khilafat movement. It was purely an academic programme and there was no politics involved in it. The varsity always organises such events in which international speakers participate."
"There is no advisory from the government over inviting speakers in webinars. We invite well-known academicians for discussions and the Turkish professor's invite was routine," he added. "We will send the webinar proceedings to the University Grants Commission (UGC) and MoE which is the usual process," he said.