Shura Council and Islamic
Relief Raise over $700,000 for Quake Victims
A Pakistan Link Report
Pictures by Naushad Sarwar
Dr Muzammil Siddiqi,
Consul General Jadmani, Fawad Yaqub, Anas Amla
Anaheim: Thanks to the generosity
of a sizable number of Arab-American Muslims, the October
22 fundraiser at the Anaheim Convention Center saw the collection
of $700,000 for the South Asian earthquake victims. The
Convention hall was overflowing with more than 700 people
demonstrating the Ummah’s concern for the quake victims.
Many attendees were teary-eyed as they listened to the speeches
and watched the plight of the earthquake victims during
the screening of a short documentary.
The fundraiser was sponsored by the Islamic Relief and the
Shura Council of Southern California. The co-sponsors of
the event included Council of Pakistan American Affairs
(COPAA), South Asian Festival of Los Angeles (SAFLA), MSA-West,
and Pakistan Link.
on the occasion, Dr Muzammil Siddiqi, eminent religious
scholar and President of the Shura Council of Southern California,
exhorted the gathering to contribute generously to the relief
funds for the earthquake victims. Muslims, he said, had
contributed generously to the relief operations for the
Tsunami and the Katrina Hurricane victims and they should
demonstrate the same spirit of compassion while helping
the earthquake victims of South Asia.
Quoting from the Holy Qur’an, Dr Siddiqi said that
Allah says, “We test you sometime in difficulty and
sometime in happiness.” Kashmiris and the NWFP victims
of the quake “were going through a test and we are
also going through a test. Anytime, anything can happen
to anyone at any place. Such tragedies make you humble.
Despite scientific advances” human beings are under
the control of Allah. This is the moment to “turn
towards Allah and to turn to the needy and to those who
Dr Siddiqi informed the gathering that the Fiqh Council
of North America has decreed that “when such a disaster
comes you can give your zakat” to the victims. Fidya
and kuffara money too could be given to the earthquake victims,
Basmah Usman, Arif
Sheikh, Ahmad Shamer, Hamid Malik
In his remarks on the occasion,
Consul General Noor Mohammad Jadmani furnished an update
on the rescue operations launched by the government of Pakistan
in the quake-affected areas of the country. He said fifty
thousand troops have been deployed and thousands of volunteers
are associated in the relief operations.
With winter approaching, we are “racing against time”
to save the life of the uprooted population in the quake-ravaged
areas. The terrain is mountainous and difficult to access.
Tents, blankets and medicine are badly needed by relief
teams, Mr Jadmani informed.
He applauded the role of Islamic Relief in raising funds
for the quake victims. He was also appreciative of the response
of the Pakistani-American community which had raised funds
and collected in-kind aid for the quake victims.
“These are trying times for us,” the Consul
General remarked, adding, “We must ensure that the
effort does not lose momentum.”
Islamic Relief, which was one of the sponsors of the fundraiser,
works in 35 countries in association with the United Nations.
It has earned a name for its transparent operations. It
has over 100 staffers in its Pakistan offices and responded
immediately when the earthquake struck. It has provided
winterized tents, plastic sheeting, sleeping mats, blankets,
medical supplies and food items in the quake -affected areas.
Islamic Relief has also set up 10 clinics in the area.