Srinagar: A two-day seminar on ‘Kashmir and Central Asia: Common Mystic Heritage’ started at the University of Kashmir on Tuesday.
The national-level seminar has been organised by the varsity’s Centre for Shaikh-ul-Aalam Studies (CSAS).
Dean Academic Affairs Prof Farooq A Masoodi presided as chief guest over the inaugural session, where Registrar Dr Nisar A Mir was a guest of honour.
In his presidential address, Prof Masoodi highlighted the significance of the study of cultural history in the New Education Policy (NEP). He appreciated CSAS for holding the seminar on an important theme.
In his special address, Dr Mir referred to the importance of belief (yaqeen) in the promotion of Sufi perspective. He said the university is committed to support all academic endeavors that help widen the ambit of knowledge and information.
Chairman CSAS Prof G N Khaki welcomed the guests and participants and provided a concise plan of the two-day event. He emphasised the significance of Central Asian mystics, Sufis, poets and scholars in shaping the history of India in general and Kashmir in particular, especially the pluralistic traditions of the region.
Among others, Prof Muhammad Yusuf Ganai, Dean Social Sciences KU and Prof Noor A Baba, former Dean Social Sciences KU were also present on the occasion.
Prof Gulshan Majeed, former Director, Centre of Central Asian Studies (CCAS), KU, presented the keynote address, while Prof Baba brought into focus multiple aspects of Central Asia’s influence on Kashmir’s rich history in the past.
During the course of the session, Haji Mohammad Yousuf Dambaaz, a well-known poet and Sufi practitioner of Kashmir was felicitated by CSAS with a shawl and a memento.
The inaugural session was followed by two academic sessions, chaired respectively by Prof Tarek A Rather, Director CCAS and Prof Manzoor A Bhat, Director SHIIS KU in which scholars from different disciplines read out their papers, both in offline and online modes, illustrating the multiple linkages that have shaped the connected histories of Kashmir and Central Asia. These papers focused particularly on the mystic, literary, economic and other dimensions of this history.
The seminar was attended by a galaxy of academicians, scholars and students from University of Kashmir, Islamic University of Science and Technology and Central University of Kashmir, besides JNU, AMU and JMI.