Abdul Bari Masoud | Caravan Daily
NEW DELHI – Former Jamaat-e-Islami Hind (JIH) chief, Maulana Syed Jalaluddin Umri, in the presence of his successor, Syed Sadatullah Hussaini, and other top leaders of the organisation, launched the popular Urdu newspaper ‘Dawat’ in a new weekly avatar at a ceremony held here on Saturday evening. The new portal and mobile app of the weekly were also launched on the occasion.
Speaking on the occasion, Maulana Umri emphasised that the history of Urdu journalism would be incomplete without a mention of ‘Dawat’, which played an objective and constructive role in shaping the minds of people. Nobody can point a finger towards ‘Dawat’ for yellow or irresponsible journalism since its launch in the early 50s.
Explaining the rationale behind winding up the ‘Dawat’ in its old biweekly format and launching it in a new weekly avatar, he said the decision was in tune with the new realities. In the present time, biweekly has lost its importance and value. The Dawat Trust took this decision last year as publishing a biweekly has become an economic burden too on the trust.
Maulana Umri hoped that the new format of the ‘Dawat’ will fulfill the needs of all readers and will come in more appealing and befitting manner. He said the most popular column “Khabr-o-Nazr” (News & Views) and other important content of the Sehroza Dawat have been retained from one of the oldest Urdu newspapers.
Congratulating the Dawat Trust for the launch of ’Dawat’ weekly, Dr Zafarul Islam Khan, Chairman of the Delhi Minorities Commission, said there is a crying need of a good daily newspaper in the Capital as existing Urdu papers do not reflect the community’s concerns. Dr Khan, who is also a veteran journalist and editor of Milli Gazette, further pointed out that most of the major Urdu dailies serve the interests of the ruling party or other political parties and carry very poor news content. He suggested many good things for the weekly ‘Dawat‘ for improving its content
Former chief editor of ’Dawat’ (biweekly), Abdul Haq alias Parwaaz Rahmani, shed light on the journey of the much loved newspaper. Arguably, the ’Dawat’ was and is the organ of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind, but it never ignored other milli (community) organisations’ activities and covered them with open heart, said Rahmani, who served the publication for more than four decades.
On the 59-year-old popular column on current affairs, “Khabr-o-Nazr”, he said it was started by its first editor Asghar Ali Abedi in 1955 at the time of its conversion into biweekly from weekly two years after its inception. Rahmani, who inaugurated the ’Dawat’ news portal, said the new format of the ‘Dawat’ would serve the needs of the readers spread not only in India but also in many other parts of the world.
Dr Fahimuddin Ahmed, the man behind the new weekly Dawat venture, briefed the audience on the history of Urdu journalism and ’Dawat’ itself. He said it was first launched in Allahabad in 1948 as Al-Insaaf, and then in 1953 it was rechristened as ‘Dawat’ and started as weekly from New Delhi.
He said the weekly paper would be of 24 pages with eight pages in multicolour and cater to the needs of all segments of society, especially on issues related to youth and women.
In his presidential address, Jamaat president, Syed Sadatullah Hussaini, said the Jamaat publications have offered remarkable service to the community. Objective and constructive journalism has been the hallmark of the ‘Dawat’ and now it is coming in weekly format to serve the nation and community, he added.
He also made an appeal to the journalists to give suggestions and contribute to improvement of the content of the magazine. In response to a persisting demand of a large section of the biweekly readers, he said the column “Khabr-o-Nazr” would continue in the weekly edition.
It is to mention here that the “Khabr-o-Nazr” column has been penned by Mohammed Muslim (1956-1982), Mahfuzurrahman (1982-1986), Maulana Salman Nadvi (1986-1989), and Parwaaz Rahmani since 1989.