HYDERABAD: Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Friday underscored that his country will simplify visa norms for India and expressed hope that “India will reciprocate this gesture.”
“Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran will simplify visa norms for India so that people of India find it convenient to sustain and ameliorate their relationship with the people of Iran,” said President Rouhani, while addressing a congregation of Muslims after performing Friday prayers at the historic Makkah Masjid in Hyderabad.
Denouncing the visa restrictions imposed by certain countries, the President of Iran said, “Some countries do not want to issue visas to Muslims but Iran is ready to extend complete cooperation for issuing visas to people from all communities.”
The Iranian leader also stated, “Iran is a country which is rich in oil, gas, and energy. Iran is ready to share its share its oil, gas, and energy resources for the development and progress of India."
The cooperation, according to the President, will be facilitated by the Chabahar seaport.
“Afghanistan and Central Asia will also benefit from this seaport”, he added.
It is pertinent to mention that Chabahar Port in south-eastern Iran, on the Gulf of Oman, which is being developed by India, is seen as the closest sea link of Iran to the Indian Ocean.
He also announced that Iran is desirous to bolster bilateral ties on diverse frontiers including “industry, agriculture, and new technologies.”
“Iran is desirous to continue strengthening its bilateral relationship with India. Iran and India can reap optimum benefit from this mutual cooperation towards common goals,” he added.
Rouhani, who is a senior Shia cleric too, called for unity among Muslims across the world.
“Our only aim is to promote unity among the Muslims of the world,” he emphasised adding, “the enemies of Islam do not want Muslims to be united. If Muslims (Muslim countries) were united, the President of America would not have dared to announce Jerusalem as the capital of Israel."
“If Muslims of the world were united, these countries wouldn’t have dared to torture Muslims of Palestine every day,” he maintained.
The only solution to this conundrum, he said is “Muslims should rise above sectarian differences and embrace all different sects of the Muslim community as Muslims in general” while exhorting Muslims “to tolerate and respect fellow Muslims across the world (regardless of sectarian differences)”, and others.
“The world says that Muslims are terrorists, but Islam, in fact, is the religion of peace and mercy. Every time a Muslim offers prayers (Namaz), the first words where Muslims recite Quranic verse Bismillah Hir Rahman Nir Raheem signify that Islam is the religion of peace and mercy”, he pointed.
Referring to the recent killing of students in the United States by an ex-student, the President of Iran said “in western countries and in America, in schools, colleges and universities, people are mass murdered, and this means that America cannot be the torchbearer of humanity or promoter of the welfare of humanity.”
Meanwhile, he lauded the cultural confluence and religious harmony in India, and said, “Whatever faith different communities in India have, they are co-existing peacefully, and Iran appreciates that.”
The President who was on a two-day visit to Hyderabad said the “architecture and historical sites of Hyderabad testify historic relations between Deccan and India” while conveying “cordial greetings from the people of Iran to the people of India”.
He lauded the peaceful coexistence and confluence of interfaith communities in Hyderabad.
Earlier, the President of Iran visited the Qutub Shahi Tombs to pay homage to the founders of Hyderabad.