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Dr Syed Zafar Mahmood's interview publisehed in Madhyamam Newspaper

Through interest-less banking window India should tap rich Muslim resource for national growth
- Dr Syed Zafar Mahmood
Madhyamam - Iqbal Chennara

Malappuram 27 July 2015 - Dr Syed Zafar Mahmood, President of Zakat Foundation of India expressed his opinion that it is imperative that through interest-less banking the investments of rich Indian Muslims should also be used towards national economic growth. Dr. Mahmood is a former ‘Officer on special duty’ for the erstwhile Indian Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh. He was in Malappuram to give leadership to the national screening test being conducted by Zakat Foundation of India for its Civil Services training program. He said that India has 100 percent opportunity for initiating Islamic banking. Indonesia and India are the two countries which have the largest Muslim population in the world. Even then the reality is that we are not able to utilize the wealth of a vast section of our population in our economy. Indian Muslim’s have changed over the years and now many among them are rich. But since our banking system is founded on the principle of interest based deposit and receipt many of them hesitate to invest their money in banks. This untapped investment should be integrated into our economy to ensure national growth otherwise our economy will remain behind in the international arena. RBI’s proposed mutual funds for Muslim’s were halted because Dr Subramaniam Swamy had written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi opposing it. Mr Modi is maintaining a careful balance between the demands of his prime ministerial position and RSS and that is his political strategy.

Zakat Foundation of India is actively working all over India for the welfare of widows, orphans and sick people. On top of this the foundation also imparts training for giving Civil Services exam. During the last seven years around 59 people have cleared the Civil Services exam. Aspirants from Kerala start preparation at a very late stage. Students from classes 8th to 12th should be prepared for this exam. The student should spend at least 1.5 hours daily on reading newspapers and it should strictly include an English newspaper of high standard and repute. He feels that if they continue this practice they can become an I.A.S. officer within 6 to 7 years. Dr. Syed Zafar Mahmood was a member of ‘Sachar committee' formed in the year 2006. He has made presentations on topics related to Islamic finance in Harvard and Glasgow universities. Around 150 people participated in the national screening test conducted in Malappuram. This was done in collaboration with SOL Education Trust. The Asst. Collector of West Bengal, Mr. Unice Ismail was also present as a guest. Mr. Ismail had cleared Civil Services exam.