COLOMBO : As DC Books announced the winners of the recently-held statewide online quiz on Ramayana, held to mark the observance of Ramayana month, the top two names of five winners caught everyone’s attention.
Mohammed Jabir P K and Mohammed Basith M, two Muslim students from Malappuram, topped the online Ramayana quiz which had a participation of over 1,000 people. Both of them are pursuing Wafy course at KKHM Islamic & Arts College, Valanchery.
Under the eight-year Wafy programme, they are pursuing Islamic studies up to post-graduation level which also includes a regular university degree course.
The unique syllabus of Wafy course, which includes a paper on Indian religions that studies Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism, gave him an edge, said Jabir. Part of the course also has a paper dealing with Christianity, Judaism, Taoism, etc.
“The Wafy course’s syllabus, designed by Coordination of Islamic Colleges headed by Abdul Hakeem Faizi Adrissery, our principal, encourages us to study all religions with the aim of equipping students to live in a multi-religious society. In line with that vision, our syllabus has modules which study various religions in detail,” said Jabir.
Inspired by the syllabus, some seniors are now doing PhD research in comparative study of religions, including Islam & Buddhism and Islam & Sikhism from foreign varsities, he added.
As part of the syllabus, he studied readings on Ramayana and referred to extra readings from the college library books, said Jabir. “Studying the epic, I understood that people of all religions should study the religious books of each other. Studying various religions would help prevent violence in the name of religion. All religions teach us to love and respect each other. Ramayana upholds the ideals of love and peace. There are also lessons of sacrifice of power for one’s own brother, to honour the father’s word and also of good governance,” said Jabir.
He learnt about the Ramayana quiz from the Telegram group of DC Books and signed up for it. “Besides a quick brush-up, no elaborate preparation was involved,” he said.
Jabir, hailing from Perinthalmanna, is a final-year Wafy PG student and has completed BA in Sociology.
Fellow winner and Omanoor-native Mohammed Basith is a fifth-year Wafy student pursuing BA Psychology.
The other winners of the competition, held between July 23 and 25, are Abhiram M P, Neetu Krishnan and Navneeth Gopan.