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Speech by Hazar Imam at Institutional Banquet in Mumbai, India 2013-09-28

Saturday, 2013, September 28
theismaili.org video
Institutional Dinner Mumbai 2013-09-28
Aga Khan IV (H.H. Prince Karim)

September 28, 2013
(Hazar Imam was presented a gift from the Indian Jamat of a late 18th century bronze incense burner of the Moghul period )

President and Leaders of the Jamat,

I have often said that it is the Imam’s role to spoil the Jamat, not the other way round. So if you are happy, as I am happy with the days that we have spent together then I have fulfilled my role which is to bring happiness to My Jamat. And I want to thank you for the 11 magnificent days in India, for the very kind words of the President, for the wonderful music that we heard, for the wonderful organization of the Jamat.

But perhaps more important than all of that is that this has been for Me a visit of the newly opened doors. And that is very important because it says to Me that the Jamat in India has a future which we can recognize, which we can identify, which we can work towards and there is a logical, clear road ahead.

In 1957, many of the countries where the Jamat lived were colonies. And I was always concerned about the volatility of the countries in which the Jamat was living and I always felt that somehow we had to create a network of institutions around the developing world. And this meant building a number of institutions covering essentially a civil society so that men and women could live with some confidence that if things went wrong in a given area, there was nonetheless, the institutional capacity to address the issues. And that is why I have spent time on education, on healthcare, on building economic institutions, on trying to achieve global standards of quality so that the Jamat does not feel in the developing world that because it lives in the developing world, it has been shortcut on the global standards of performance.
The second aspect of this visit is to express my admiration as to the way you have organized this visit. And I want to compliment all the leaders of the Jamat, present, not present, those who have established leadership traditions, organizational traditions, which have made it possible for Me to have 11 days of enormous happiness with My Jamat in India.

And finally to express to you My gratitude for that lovely gift that you have given Me. As you know I attach great importance to Indian history and to the great Caliphates, to the great empires of the Muslim world because I believe there is always something to learn. The past is a place to learn even if the future is different. And this is why I have spent considerable time in trying to enhance in India, the Moghul history and to learn how the Moghuls achieved global leadership.

Lastly I say to My leaders and to all the Murids who are here it has been an enormously happy visit. And I hope you will recognize from my own personal joy the confidence that I have as we build for the future. It is very exciting indeed, and on My radar screen, India is in the countries of greatest opportunity for the Jamat.

Thank you.

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