Islamic Voice
Zul Hijja / Muharram 1422 H
March 2002
Volume 15-03 No:183

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Living Islam


Schools of Thought by the Seashore
An Alien Culture



Schools of Thought by the Seashore

Late Haji K. Mohidin Beary began the journey 63 years ago as a teacher with his selfless mission to impart education, and the saga continues today

By A Staff Writer

“If you can dream it, you can do it,” said advertising expert Bill Bernbach. While most of us think big and dream, it takes a brave heart to get into action to fulfill one’s dreams. Born in a God-fearing and loving family in the most picturesque part of coastal Karnataka in a tiny village named Kodi, the land between the gushing river and the deep blue Arabian Sea, Syed Moh’d Beary was entrant no. 9 into the family of the great Beary’s of Kodi, Kundapur in Udipi district. His father late Haji K. Mohidin Beary began the journey 63 years ago as a teacher to fulfill his dream to brighten up the life of every child of this village with the lamp of education. His dream unfolded in the Government Higher Primary School (Urdu medium), Haji K. Mohidin Beary Memorial High School, Beary’s Seaside Public School (English medium) and several Anganwadis.

Syed Moh’d Beary who is today a renowned builder and developer in Bangalore was moved by the pathetic condition of the coastal villages like Kodi, Uppunda, Alur, Balkur, Keradi and Belve where there were no proper schools for the children. For Syed Beary, Kodi’s academic development turned into a mission for life. “But nothing have I received easily,” says Syed Beary. Starting off with his brother in the trade of wholesale fish mongering, the trite formal education left him completely uninspired. He initially trudged along the conventional path of set educational standards and reached the second year pre-degree commerce course at Bhandaskars College in Kundapur. Then, began his escapades in a harsh world which made Syed Beary worldy wise and soon he mastered each trade beginning with writer, clerk, cashier, hotelier and manager and even sailed across the seven seas to the Persian Gulf. “ I knew in my heart that my purpose lay elsewhere, so I returned to India and set up the Real Estate Consultancy with my two younger brothers and diversified into properties evelopment, Infrastructure and Infotech.

But my most prized endeavour has been in delivering yeomen service in education,” explains Syed Beary. His hard work with the support of his family, culminated into the Bearys Academy of Learning and the Bearys Group have created a distinctive landmark at Mangalore with “ His Grace “ Apartment Project, and within the precincts of these villaments is housed, “ His Grace Montessori”, which offers education to children from the age of 2 and a half, to 6 years. Since inception, the Bearys Seaside Public School at Kodi founded by the Haji K. Mohidin Beary Education Trust in 1993 provides quality education to the kids of this village and surrounding villages most of them who are poor in the true sense of the word. In the name of their late teacher father Haji K. Mohidin Beary, his sons Syed Beary and Haji Master Mohamood nurtured the infant school which today has grown into a worthy educational institution where village children acquire the best education.

At a time when education has become an industry, Bearys Academy of Learning, with its resolve to offer education with a distinction and unwavering commitment to deliver excellence and six decades of sound past to back, is now in a position to bring the difference to secondary education in Mangalore. And this year, the Bearys Group set up the Bearys Public School, (BPS), the first Residential School in Mangalore, with a truly international standard in every effort. Located at the Facility Block “ His Grace,” BPS is in the best of locales in Mangalore.

With the process of seeking affiliation to the Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations, the school will have children from Montessori to Class XII. “Beginning this academic year-2002-2003, we open a window of opportunity to all those parents who not only merely wish for quality education for their wards, but are also keen to establish a working partnership with the educators in crafting and building an intelligent and sensitive new generation”, says Syed Beary as the Managing Trustee of the Bearys Academy of Learning. Steered by the dynamic and internationally acclaimed educationist Dr Shabbir Ahmed Sayeed as the Principal of the school, BPS plans to incorporate internationally tested instructional tools and aids. “ There is lack of balance between contemporary and religious education today. The Muslims tend to sway towards extremes-either it is the traditional religious education minus the modern sciences or modern concepts without the spiritual essence in it.

At BPS we wish to inculcate the best of both the spiritual and the contemporary education-that’s deen and duniya makes a human being balanced,” says Dr Sayeed who migrated back home to India after contributing his intellect as a teacher in various schools in Jeddah. “ We do not accept donations, students are enrolled in BPS according to merit,” confirms Syed Beary. With his unflinching determination, Syed Beary has struggled against all odds and pursued his mission of providing the best quality education that will reach the downtrodden.

What has been the most crucial point in Syed Beary’s endeavour is his broad vision. ‘ We as Muslims ought to be more tolerant and accept members of the other community, the problem is we live in our own compartments, our cocoons, we demand our rights, but forget our duties. The service we do is a social responsibility as we are accountable and it is high time we shed our arrogance and get down-to-earth and face the realities of life,” says Syed Beary. The saga of imparting education for 63 years by the Bearys Group serves as an example, reflecting the fact that hard work and a missionary zeal is tantamount for the success of any venture and more so in the field of education, where egos take a back seat and what matters really is the spirit of sacrifice.to the community.

To know more about how the Bearys Group is creating waves of excellence in the village of Kodi, get in touch with Syed Moh’d Beary on Ph: 080 2273124 or semail to education@bearysgroup.com

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An Alien Culture

With the national media wholeheartedly promoting the concept, Muslim youngsters too have sadly fallen into the Valentine’s Day trap, destroying the Islamic ethos treasured by Muslims for centuries

M. H. Lakdawala

February 14, has passed this year, but it has raised lot of controversies. The Valentine day is celebrated all over the western world on February 14. In our country since the last five years, Valentine day is aggressively marketed by the consumer product companies and promoted by the national media for obvious reasons.

This year, for the first time, Valentine day products were visible throughout the Muslim-dominated localities in Mumbai. The shops in Mohammed Ali Road, Bhendi Bazaar, Dongri, Kurla and Jogeswari, prominently displayed Valentine day symbols such as greeting cards and those ‘red hearts’ as gifts. Business was brisk here. Even a cursory look in the cybercafés in these localities revealed that Muslim youngsters were busy sending Valentine greeting cards to the members of the opposite sex. Rauf Ahmed, a SSC student was busy sending Valentine greeting to his online friend in USA. When asked by this correspondent in a cyber café at Bhendi Bazaar, he said that this is the first time he is sending a Valentine card. “I do not know anything about Valentine day. Since my friends are sending greetings cards, this day I also decided to send the same”, he said. Abdullah Bhai of Saifee Book Agencies at Mohammed Ali road revealed that as compared to last year, this year, sale of Valentine day products has increased by 200 per cent. “Last year, we sold only Valentine greeting card, but this year, besides cards, there was huge demand for the Valentine gifts especially pen-sets,” he said. On the one hand, young generation of Muslims are taking to Valentine day celebration, thanks to the aggressive marketing and support from the national media, on the other hand, elders are totally ignorant about it. Zahid Patel 48, a civil contractor was totally ignorant when asked about his opinion about Valentine day. “Though I read about it in the media, I am not aware about it”, he said.

Though Valentine day celebration may not have reached alarming proportions, but the style in which it is promoted, the time is not far when it will be taken up by a large chunk of Muslim youth. Today we are at the throes of a worldwide reformation of cultures, a tectonic shifts of habits and dreams called, by social scientists, as “Globalisation”. According to them, ‘globalisation’ is a reality, not a choice. In the age of computers, the Internet, cellular phones, cable television and cheaper jet transportation, as the goods move, people move, and ideas are shared and cultures are changing. Telegraph, telephones, radio and television have tied tighter and more intricate knots between individuals and the wider world. Still the basic dynamics remains the same .The difference now is the speed and scope of these changes. It took television 13 years to acquire 50 million users, but the Internet took only five. Thus the issue of Valentine day celebration cannot be taken lightly. It must be opposed strongly, but not by violent means as done by the Shiv Sena, but by educating the Muslim youth about its wrong effects on the moral and social fabric of the society. That these are essentially time-serving stunts become patently clear when the record of some of these votaries of ‘cultural purity’ is considered. The Shiv Sena, for instance, which religiously observes St Valentine’s Day every year without fail by opposing it vociferously, has had no problems in air-dropping Michael Jackson on Mumbai, so just what is it about now?

The national media had made it an issue related to the freedom of expression which is totally a wrong stance. Infact, media has a vested interest in promoting Valentine day as it brings them advertisements. Why is the media not so enthusiastic about Mothers day, Fathers day or for that matter, Disabled day? The celebration of Valentine day is nothing, but giving open license to the youth to indulge in immoral acts. In Mumbai, couple of cases were reported on the night of Valentine day when some youth were chasing girls in cars leading to a major accident in which all innocent girls were injured. Cyberguru Nicholas Negroponte made two fascinating points at the ‘elink 2001" conference in Berlin. First the demographics of the Net will change and the developing countries will come to dominate the Internet. Second, if one wants to spot the countries that could win in the future, it is best to focus on their cultural traits.

“Culture is more important than infrastructure”. Thus in this age of Information revolution, preserving the culture is very crucial for the survival of the communities. Culture is changing along with its audiences. Where does the Muslim ummah stand in the current cultural warfare? When two cultures of different wave-lengths interact, it is obvious that one coming from the developed society will dominate, many a time, in the process completely destroying the moral and social fabric of the not-so developed societies. So here, the issue is not of freedom of expression as propagated by the media, but the question is more of morality, Islamic ethos and values which Muslims treasure since centuries.

The very fact that St Valentine’s day has become a national concern and the fact that the national media wholeheartedly supports the votaries of Valentine day, calls for a rational debate. Accepting the challenge of modernity is learning to live with them without losing one’s sense of identity.

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