[Reader-list] Holy patriotism!

Yousuf Saeed ysaeed7 at yahoo.com
Fri Aug 24 10:32:54 IST 2007

Patriotic tribute: Quran inscribed on India map 
(Aug 15, 2007, Deccan Herald)

For Shiraz Hussain, a 38-year-old artist of Garden
Reach in South Kolkata, his dream will shortly be
fulfilled when he will present to Prime Minister
Manmohan Singh an aluminium map of India, on which he
has painstakingly inscribed the verses from the Holy
Quran. "It is my humble tribute to the people of India
to mark the 60 years of Independence," Shiraz Hussain
told Deccan Herald here. Shiraz had laboured hard for
days on end to inscribe verses from the Quran on a
20-inch x 24-inch aluminium map and make five copies
of them. While the other four dignitaries to whom he
wishes to present copies of the map are former
president A P J Abdul Kalam, Prime Minister Dr
Manmohan Singh, Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and
Railway Minister Lalu Prasad, Hussain declined to
reveal the name of another "important personality" who
also figures in his list.

Shiraz had gone to New Delhi twice - April and July,
to personally hand over his creation to the Prime
Minister before the Independence Day but had no luck.
"I received a call on August 9 last from the PMO and
was asked to visit Dr Singh to present the map,"
Hussain said. But he could not undertake the travel
owing to some domestic hitches. "I hope to meet the
Prime Minister soon and present him the map," Hussain
claimed. In 2006, Shiraz entered the Limca Book of
Records for engraving the full text of the Quran on an
aluminium sheet. He is keen to make another bid for an
entry into the record books for being the first to
engrave verses from the holy book on the map of India.

"Actually, Hazrat Imam Hussain, the grandson of
Prophet Mohammed, wanted to come to India in the 60th
Hijri as per the Islamic calendar, when the army of
Yazeed stopped him in Iraq. After his martydom at the
beginning of the 61st Hijri, his followers used to
recite 'Sura-e-Kahaf', volume 15-16, from Quran," he
said. "Hazrat Imam Hussain began his journey from
Medina in Saudi Arabia in the 60th Hijri and got
martyrdom at the beginning of the 61st Hijri. Our
country is going to complete the 60th year of
independence this year on August 15, 2007 and will
enter the 61st year," Shiraz said, explaining the
significance of his effort.

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