Maryam Asif Siddiqui, a 12-year-old student from Mumbai, who recently won the Bhagavad Gita Champion League got a chance to meet the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi.
A student of Cosmopolitan High School, Mira Road, Maryam won the first position among over 3,000 participants in the written test to evaluate the knowledge of the Gita among school children. It was organized by ISKCON – the International Society for Krishna Consciousness.
Curiously Maryam’s parents too supported her when she said that she wanted to read Gita. “Our family believes that one needs to respect and accept all religions. No religion preaches hatred or wrong. However, there are some members who have misguided us. Before these have a bad influence on the children, we need to talk to them and make them understand what is right,” said her father, Asif Siddiqui.
“We need to respect and accept all religions. No religion preaches hatred or wrong,” her father Asif Siddiqui was quoted as saying.
The last word, of course, was uttered by Maryam herself when she said, “I was curious to know what the Gita tries to tell us. The more I read about different religions, the more I realized that humanity is the most important religion.”
“Lord Krishna was so knowledgeable and cool. He taught so many nice and good things to Arjun.” she says innocently.
Maryam donated cheques of Rs. 11,000/- each to the Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund and Swachhta Abhiyan during her meeting with the Prime Minister.
The Prime Minister in turn gifted her five books on different religions and congratulated her for her interest in various religions which is an inspiration for all Indians.
Maryam was accompanied by her parents, Asif Naseem Siddiqui and Farhan Asif Siddiqui.