The Muslim community is prepared to look at themselves critically and rectify any shortcomings, said the Minister of Highways and Road Development, Kabir Hashim yesterday (16).
He told the Media held at the Sri Lanka Foundation Institute that he was speaking on behalf of the Muslim community. Former Parliamentarian Imithiaz Bakeer Markar, Ferial Ashraff and M.U.M. Ali Sabry (PC) also attended the Press conference.
“What happened on Easter Sunday hurt our community a lot. It has created a rift between us and all the other cultures in Sri Lanka. We implore the Sinhala and Tamil communities not to judge the majority of our community through the acts of a few extremist terrorists. But we believe that it is also our responsibility to look into certain elements of our culture as well. We’re trying our best to remove any foreign influence that has seeped into our culture, for the betterment of this country,” he added.
He also added that in this backdrop the Muslim community has cooperated with the raids and arrests conducted by the Police and the Armed Forces.
“Make no mistake, the Muslim community is giving its fullest cooperation to arrest those suspected of having anything to do with extreme elements and in the raids conducted by the security forces.
In Mawanella, there were Muslim parents who tipped off the Police about their sons,” he added.
Meanwhile, Sabry (PC) said there were certain elements that have seeped into the Sri Lankan Muslim culture which was alien. With many workers migrating to the Middle East for employment these have taken root.
He further expressed the importance of regulating Madrasas (Islamic colleges) and added that a bill to regulate such schools will be passed in the near future.
(Source: Ceylon Today – By Ranmini Gunasekara)