Mandatory for govt to accede Muslims’ religious rights: AIMPLB

By Pervez Bari,,

Jaipur: Muslims, being citizens of India strive to claim their religious rights righteously and it is the duty of those in power to oversee that Muslims achieve this in a judicious and friendly manner without any ill feelings, believe Maulana Syed Mohammad Rabey Hasani Nadvi.

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“It is necessary to make it crystal clear in front of those who hold the reins of power today that whatever Constitutional rights Muslims have as a citizen of free India they should confer upon them in a democratic manner. It is mandatory for the government of the day to honour the Indian Constitution to accede to all the religious and citizens’ rights of the Muslims and others of the country,” Maulana Syed Mohammad Rabey Hasani Nadvi, president of All India Muslim Personal Board, (AIMPLB), while delivering his presidential speech in the three-day 24th general session of AIMPLB here in the pink city at the seminary Jamea-Tul-Hidayah on Saturday.

Muslim Personal Law Board
Maulana Syed Mohammad Rabey Hasani Nadvi, president AIMPLB at a function in Jaipur on March 21, 2015.

Over 400 delegates from all over the country are participating in the convention.

Maulana Nadvi added, “If Muslims, who constitute nearly one fifth of country’s population and this is no small a number, are not taken into confidence with inclusive growth then India cannot stride on the path of development in a meaningful manner. For this the communal harmony between the majority and the minority communities should be the hallmark of development with granting full rights to the minorities and this is the duty of the government of the day to ensure it.”

This would strengthen brotherly relations among the communities leading to communal harmony and national integration which in turn would be beneficial for the country, he added.

Maulana Nadvi said there is a constant need to keep the freedom of religious right intact as there is a likelihood that it may be tampered with or the situation may be created by the government of the day to take it under its control. He expressed apprehension that the new government at the Centre has aspirations to take the country into a new direction while abandoning secular and democratic character of the Indian Constitution. This would be suicidal for the country. As such the responsible persons of the Muslim Ummah will have to understand this direction of the government of the day and find out possible solutions to the problem, he opined.

He cautioned the Indian Muslim community to remain vigilant to safeguard the Islamic Sharia as the conditions that prevailed more than 40 years ago which forced to form a board to protect the Muslim personal laws have not abated and will continue to raise their heads from time to time. Without naming any particular party government, he said, fresh dangers are looming large with more vigour now as the new government of the day seems intent to usurp the Sharia laws. If the community does not pay necessary heed to safeguard it then harm may be caused in performing their religious rituals and following their rights and duties as a Muslim in the country.

As such Muslims should keep a constant eye on the situation and the developments that take place therein so that the community is always able to avail its religious freedom as guaranteed by the Indian constitution and there is no curb on it. This is necessary because they are in the minority and their identity as a Muslim is maintained unscathed. There is a possibility that the bogey of Uniform Civil Code which occurred in some people’s minds can crop up again while it is well known that the Indian Constitution has given country’s every religion the right to practice it according to their established norms and run their institutions.

He asked Muslims to make aware the vast majority of country who are ignorant about the special features of Islam which is beneficial for the whole humanity. If this is done then the opposition from the main majority community, who think Muslims as adversaries, would cease by itself. Moreover, Muslims should not get demoralised but stand united to face the challenges posed by the adversaries.

Earlier, Maulana Mohammad Fazlur Rahim Mujaddidi, who is rector of Jamea-Tul-Hidaya and convenor and president of the Organising Committee of AIMPLB meeting, delivered the welcome address.

Maulana Mujaddidi said the issue of Muslim personal law has come up with all fierceness. It has made Muslims restless and concerned about their religion which the non-Muslims think that the community gives undue importance to Sharia laws. The non-Muslims want that as the political and economy has been liberated from religion so also the social life of Muslims should be freed from it.

The Maulana said adversaries of Muslim Personal Law want it to be replaced by Uniform Civil Code as they think that Shariah is related just limited to marriage affairs and nothing more than that. However, Sharia laws govern the whole life of Muslims from life to death, he added.

Meanwhile, a book titled “Ayodhya Tanazah: Fasana Hai Haqueequat Nahin” (Ayodhya Controversy: Fairy tale Not Reality) authored by Hyderabad-based Advocate Abdur Rahim Qureshi, who is also Assistant Secretary of AIMPLB, along with several other books were also released on the occasion.