Muhammad Abdul Bari
Muhammad Abdul Bari
|Native name||মুহাম্মাদ আব্দুল বারি|
2 October 1953 |
Tangail, East Pakistan
|Residence||Tooting, London, England|
Professional Graduate Certificate in Education
|Alma mater||Chittagong University
Royal Holloway College
King's College London
|Occupation||Physicist, educationalist, writer|
Muhammad Abdul Bari, MBE FRSA (Bengali: মুহাম্মাদ আব্দুল বারি; born 2 October 1953), is the Chairman of the East London Mosque, and was the Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain from 2006 until 2010.
After studying at Chittagong University, he joined the Bangladesh Air Force in 1978. Later he moved to the United Kingdom. In 1983, he was awarded a scholarship to do a PhD in England. He studied Physics at King's College London, and joined Royal Holloway College, University of London as a postdoctoral researcher, when he become involved in community work. He entered into teaching after completing Post Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) from King's College London in 1991. He spent five years in a secondary school in Haringey, London, teaching Science. He joined Tower Hamlets Education Authority as a Specialist Teacher in 1997. He is a researcher in physics, science teacher and Special Educational Needs specialist in London.
Bari has served East London’s diverse communities in various capacities for three decades. Since 2002, he has been the Chairman of the board of trustees at the East London Mosque (London’s first mosque, which now includes the London Muslim Centre) leading the institution to win the national ‘Super Model Mosque Competition’ in 2009. He is also a founding member of The East London Communities Organisation (TELCO), a coalition of churches, mosques, and other civil society organisations working together to promote understanding and a safer, fairer and better governed city.
He was Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain from June 2006 until June 2010, having completed two terms. Prior to that, he served as the Council's Deputy-Secretary General for four years. As Secretary General, Bari worked to have more young people take part in the Council’s work.
A physicist and educationalist by training, Bari received his doctorate in Physics and qualified as a teacher from King’s College London, and gained a management degree from the Open University. He is now a Special Educational Needs specialist in London.
In addition, Bari is a patron of the National Youth Agency, The Ramphal Institute, Anchor House (a homeless charity based in Newham, London) and Nida Trust (an educational charity). He is a trustee of Muslim Aid, an international charity and London Catalyst. He served on the Good Childhood Inquiry Panel which was set up by the Children's Society in 2006. He is also an advisor to the Centre for Public Policy Seminars.
Bari is a parenting consultant and facilitates an interactive parenting skills programme "Building Families" (www.amanaparenting.com). He has written for various newspapers, journals and community publications. He is the author of Building Muslim Families, A Guide to Parenting, "Addressing Adolescence: A Guide to Parenting in Islam" and Race, Religion and Muslim Identity in Britain.
In 2003, Dr Bari was awarded an MBE for services to the community. In 2005, he was made a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. In July 2008, he was made an Honorary Fellow of Queen Mary, University of London.
Timeout magazine in London found Dr Bari as one of London's 100 top movers and shakers in 2006. London Evening Standard found him one of London's 1000 most influential people in 2009. Dr Bari was recognised for his ‘Outstanding Achievement’ by British Bangladeshi Who's Who in Islamic Affairs and Community Relations. In January 2012, he was in the British Bangladeshi Power 100.
The University of East London conferred on Dr Bari with honorary doctorate in education in November 2012 ‘for his work as secretary general of the Muslim Council of Britain from 2006 to 2010 and for his contribution to the cultural life of east London’.
In 11th Muslim Awards Ceremony of The Muslim News in March 2013 the Judges Panel conferred Dr Bari with Special 'Iman wa Amal (Faith and Action)' award.
Dr Bari is one of the world’s 500 Most Influential Muslims .
Bari has appeared in the British media to speak about Muslims in Britain, integration and what efforts could be taken to improve and control fundamentalism rising among and against Muslims since 9/11 and the 7 July bombings. In an interview with the Daily Telegraph, he said he believes the rise of Islamophobia is linked to sections of the media and some politicians: "But some political leaders and sections of the media are demonising Muslims, treating them as if they're all terrorists – and that encourages other people to do the same." "Young Muslims need role models to show them they can play a part in British society."
Bari feels that the media is only interested in fringe groups of angry Muslims instead of mainstream Muslims from the community. He also made the criticism that some right wing tabloid media twisted some of his past comments. Bari criticises the government's stance on how it deals with violent extremism, which he believes is responsible for creating tensions within the communities, and believes that the "UK will become Nazi Germany, if the situation is not handled very well by the government." One of his examples included remarks by the head of MI5, Jonathan Evans, and criticised the government’s war on Iraq, described as a "disaster."
His interests include reading and travelling "where there are mountains and seas." His father was a land-owning farmer in the Tangail outside Dhaka. He speaks Bengali and English fluently and believes all immigrants to the United Kingdom should speak English.
- Abdul Bari, Muhammad (2002). “The Greatest Gift: A Guide to Parenting from an Islamic Perspective”. Ta-Ha Publishers. ISBN 978-1-84200-044-1
- Abdul Bari, Muhammad (2005). “Race, Religion, & Muslim Identity in Britain”. Renaissance Press. ISBN 978-0-9543294-7-1
- Abdul Bari, Muhammad (2007). “Marriage and Family Building in Islam”. Ta-Ha Publishers. ISBN 978-1-84200-083-0
- Abdul Bari, Muhammad (2011). “Addressing Adolescence: A Guide to Parenting in Islam”. Ta-Ha Publishers. ISBN 978-1-84200-125-7
- Abdul Bari, Muhammad. (2012). “British, Muslims, Citizens: Introspection and Renewal”. Consilium Publishing. ISBN 978-1-62095-097-5
- Abdul Bari, Muhammad. (2013). “Meet the Challenge, Make the Change: A call to action for Muslim civil society in Britain”, Cordoba Foundation.
- "London Gazette – Issue 56797" (PDF). 31 December 2002. Retrieved 6 December 2008.
- "A voice for Muslims (Profile: Muhammad Abdul Bari)". MCB. Retrieved 6 December 2008.
- "Profile: Dr Muhammad Abdul Bari". BBC NEWS. 5 June 2006. Retrieved 6 December 2008.
- "MCB News". MCB. 4 June 2006. Retrieved 6 December 2008.
- "LOCOG board (About us)". London 2012. Retrieved 6 December 2008.
- "'UK will become Nazi Germany' if it's not careful when tackling terrorism, says Muslim leader". Daily Mail. 10 November 2007. Retrieved 3 May 2009.
- "UK Muslim Leader Urges More Positive Focus". Sky News. 10 November 2007. Retrieved 3 May 2009.
- "'British should try arranged marriages'". The Telegraph. 10 June 2006. Retrieved 6 December 2008.
- Harrison, David. Media 'contributing to rise of Islamophobia'. The Telegraph. 10 September 2006
- 'UK will become Nazi Germany' if it's not careful when tackling terrorism, says Muslim leader. Daily Mail. 10 November 2007
- 'British should try arranged marriages'. The Telegraph. 10 June 2006
- 'Trust at risk' after terror raid. The Guardian. 6 June 2006
- Eid in the square. BBC London News. December 2006
- UK Muslim Leader Urges More Positive Focus. Sky News. 10 November 2007
- Sylvester, Rachel; Thomson, Alice. Dr Bari: Government stoking Muslim tension The Telegraph. 10 November 2007