Home » Interviews » Sureshbhai Jani interviews Qasim Abbas, a Pakistani Gujarati

Qasim-Abbas

Qasim-Abbas

Sureshbhai Jani, a well wisher and reader of Speakbindas interviews Mr. Qasim-Abbas, who was born in India, educated in Pakistan and now living in Canada.



Suresh Jani

  • Your active life has been as an accountant. What prompted you to pursue it? Do you think, given a choice, you would have pursued some other profession?

Qasim Abbas

  • I passed my Matriculation examination in 1956, and due to poor financial condition, I could not join college. And after 4 years in 1960, I thought of further education after office hours in the evening college and that was Commerce, and in 1960, I completed B.Com. Then in 1966, I thought of further education beyond B.Com. And then based on my Commerce education, I joined a prestigious audit firm in Pakistan to become qualified accountant and I became Chartered Accountant in 1970. Then I again thought for further advancement and in 1975, I became Cost & Management Accountant. Now I am B.Com., F.C.A., F.C.M.A.  If circumstances were different, I might have chosen career in Engineering.

Suresh Jani

  • You have taken care to give good education to your children, esp. two daughters. What prompted you to do so?

Qasim Abbas

  • Since I was not able to get good education after my Matriculation in 1956 due to poor financial condition, but later I understood the importance of education that education is power, it is wealth and it is everything in life.  So after obtaining three degrees, I was able to earn enough, I decided for very good education for my children, and I was able to do so by sending them in U.S.A. for higher education.

Suresh Jani

  • What are your views on education to Muslim children especially girls in Muslim countries?

Qasim Abbas

  • As I mentioned, education is everything, not only Muslim but all the children of the world should have opportunity of education, which is their basic right. Even the girls, particularly in Muslim countries like Afghanistan, have their inborn and basic right of education. So the Muslim families of conventional  thoughts should know that Islam religion and their Holy Scripture has never put ban on female education and have given due importance to knowledge, which is obtained through education.

Suresh Jani

  • What views do you have for status of women in Muslim world?

Qasim Abbas

  • Muslim world should clearly understand that Islam religion has given equal status to men and women. There is no discrimination between them as per Muslim Holy Scripture. In present days, now Arab countries have realized this upto some extent and now there are women in legislative assemblies and on other higher posts.

Suresh Jani

  • You have been contributing to Gujarati literature a lot in Pakistan. What future do you foresee for it?

Qasim Abbas

  • As of today, in Pakistan’s industrial city and former capital Karachi, two Gujarati dailies ”Millat” and ”Vatan” are published.  Then there are various Gujarati monthly and quarterly as well, which are mainly community based. Also every year, few Gujarati books are also published. On some occasions, Gujarati Mushaeras are also held and telecast on local television. So immediate future of Gujarati in Pakistan is not dark.  However, in coming years, Gujarati will be diminished gradually, since the new generation of Gujarati families are learning English and Urdu.

Suresh Jani

  • Do you think Pakistani Gujarati literary people should try to maintain / increase interactions with mainstream Gujarati literary world?

Qasim Abbas

  • Yes, they should do this since in other countries of the world, particularly in India and also in U.K. and U.S.A. there are Gujarati literary forums and therefore Pakistani Gujarati literary forums should have interactions with them.

Suresh Jani

  • Do you think Islam needs reforms in view of world peace and fraternity?

Qasim Abbas

  • As a matter of fact, in view of world peace and fraternity, Islam does not need reforms, but misconception and misunderstandings are to be removed about Islam.  Due to many fundamentalist types of religious scholars, who have misinterpreted Islam religion, they have gone to extreme.  So it is misconception that is required to be removed in order to have correct interpretation about Islam religion.

Suresh Jani

  • Do you subscribe to Global Humanitarianism?

Qasim Abbas

  • Yes, I do.  You see, there is a Verse’, No. 5:32 in Muslim Holy Scripture, which says that, ”If any one saved one life, it would be as if he saved the life of whole humanity.” Islam religion gives much importance to humanity, and at times, the service to humanity is mentioned as priority, before ritual worship.

Suresh Jani

  • What are your views on a general observation that Muslim world needs to catch up in intellectual progress?

Qasim Abbas

  • The intellectual progress is the back bone of a country. It provides good living and happiness to its people. Muslim world should note the progress made by Japan, China and other European countries and they should adopt a strategy for intellectual progress for the overall benefits of their people.

Suresh Jani

  • Which is the most memorable incident of your life?

Qasim Abbas

  • I must say that it is not one incident, which I can say it memorable. It is achievement in education by me and my children and my published writings to bring the truth that I am considering memorable incidents of my life.

Suresh Jani

  • Which is the worst incident of your life that you would like to undo, if given an opportunity?

Qasim Abbas

  • I consider two such incidents of my life – not worst, but which brought too sadness in my life. And there is no question of undo it. In 1996, my 26 years old son passed away in U.S.A., where he was student there with his other brother and sisters. And in 2006, my life partner of 40 years passed away in Canada. I didn’t say these as worst incidents since every one has to leave this perishable world, but we human beings are full of emotions, so those who are in our life, when they depart for heavenly abode, it is natural that we become sad.

Suresh Jani

  • What activities do you engage with, in your retired life?

Qasim Abbas

  • Reading, writing and light exercise. Writing in the sense of reformist, to bring the truth, be it on religious front or community and social front. I give much importance in bringing the truth through my writings towards those, who are having blind faith.

Suresh Jani

  • Even at the age of 70, you are very active. What is your secret formula for this?

Qasim Abbas

  • Yes, I am too active at this age. And the secret is  a dictum: ”Work is Worship”. I thank God that my writing habit in English, Urdu and Gujarati has given me new strength at this age, so I treat this a service to humanity.

Suresh Jani

  • What message would you give to readers?

Qasim Abbas

  • My message to readers is very simple. Always remember that Work is Worship. Always have human heart and remember that to help humanity is equal to worship since every religion of world promotes service to humanity.

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16 thoughts on “Sureshbhai Jani interviews Qasim Abbas, a Pakistani Gujarati

  1. Dear Qasimbhai,

    I must congratulate and thank you for sharing so candid views on Muslim world. I have never before read so honest answers on Muslim world from a Muslim friend. Your thoughts on Education should reach each and everyone, not only Muslim. Even at this day of highest technological advancements, girls in Indian villages mostly complete 10th standard. Education sets a being free, a way to freedom rather.

    And the verse you noted from Muslim Holy Scripture which says “If any one saved one life, it would be as if he saved the life of whole humanity.” – has increased respect to Muslims following it. I hope, every Muslim at least understands the Holy Scripture from a real reader like you.

    Thank you Sureshbhai for sharing burden from my shoulder. The questions you selected are so intellectual and meaningful. I think, I need to learn a lot from you.

  2. ismail vohra says:

    Qasim Bhai,

    Greate Achievemtns under most difficult circumstances. Congratulations:

    Work is Worship it has no religious or economical boundaries. Wonderful Achievement in life.

    I hope many youngsters will read this interview and understand the importance
    of discipline and hard work.

    Best regards:

    Ismail vohra
    San antonio, texas,

  3. Ali Raza Lakhani says:

    Dear Qaaim bhai
    I was glad to go thrugh your view expressed in an intervie you had with Suresh Jani. I think that we must express our iking and reservations towards recent developement all over the world particularly a propaganda by media that the Muslims are terrorist and hate non Muslims. On the contrary Islam is the only religioun which teaches how tolive peacefully with non Muslims giving them due respect and recognition of their good deeds.

  4. saifuddin Bandukwala says:

    Dear Bhai Qasim,
    I am happy that a colleague share life at 70 is as motivated as when you start a family or a career for your self.
    We are also fortunate that we have Gracefully a figurehead or should I say a fountain head Daudani Saheb,who has been a commited and dedicated teacher in real sense.He continues to inspire us all to keep this WORSHIP on.
    Regards
    Saifuddin Bandukwala

  5. Harnish Jani says:

    Quasimbhai-Good job-liked ur interview-I have always found u level headed person in ur writings.
    Thanks.

  6. Sultan Somjee says:

    Dear Bhai Qasim

    Enjoyed your interview. Happy to read there are Gujarati Muslim and Gujarati Pakistani writers like you. Also thank you Speakbindas for bringing Gujarati writers of diverse religions and nationalities together. I have written a book (yet to be published) about a Gujarati Bead Bai. Beads were a huge trade commodity during the last century in East Africa where I was born. In the urban and rural dukans Gujarati women managed the beads.

    You can read excerpts from my book and view photographs at
    http://thebeadbai.blogspot.com/

    Thanks

  7. jjugalkishor says:

    CONGRATES SUBHAI, FOR THIS NEW ACTIVITY ! IT WILL BE A NEW FEATHER IN YOUR CAP.

  8. It is nice to know Qasimbhai through this Q&A session. Your humility and simplicity in expression is so reminiscent of old friends in Saurashtra that the barriers of time, space and regions disappear. God willing we may meet some day and feel happy to share “chaa-paani” and talk about good old days…

  9. એક ગુજરાતીની વેબ સાઈટ ઉપર એક ગુજરાતી પાકીસ્તાનીનો એક ગુજરાતી અમેરીકને લીધેલ ઈન્ટરવ્યુ વાંચીને આ ગુજરાતી ભારતીયને ઘણો આનંદ થયો. બધુ જ અંગ્રેજીમાં વાંચીને થયું કે અહીં કશુંક ગુજરાતી પણ હોવું જોઈએ એટલે પ્રતિભાવ ગુજરાતીમાં લખ્યો. આશા છે કે સહુ ગુજરાતીઓને ગમશે.

  10. PH Bharadia says:

    કાસીમભાઈ અબ્બાસીના નાનામોટા લેખોમાં તેમનું વિચાર દર્શન
    એક ધાર્મિક અને સાચા માનવીનો પડઘો પાડે છે.
    તેમની આટલી ઉત્તરવયમાં પણ જોશથી કલમ ચલાવીને
    આપણે બધાને ‘સરસ’ રીતે વિચાર કરી મુકતા હોય છે.
    તેમની કલમની પ્રસાદી તેઓ આવતા વર્ષોમાં પણ આપતા
    રહે તેવી તમન્ના અને દુઆ કરીએ.

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