Shaadi hamari, jashn hamara, aap ke baap ka kya jaata hai

The heading of this post was one of the slogans chanted at a recent rally against a fatwa passed by some muslim clerics.

“In Cheetah Camp (a new Muslim settlement on the Central Line), women under four mosques that are under maulanas from the conservative Tablighi Jamaat are not even allowed to have tea at restaurants,” said Sandhya Gokhale of the Forum Against Oppression of Women, one of the women’s groups that organised the march.

This sadly happened a few days before the cloudburst and hence somehow seems to have been “flooded” over.

The floods will come and go, Bombay will fight back, recover, learn and improve.

This, the fatwa, if allowed to go unnoticed, will have a more lasting effect on our city and country.

To put it very bluntly, the maulanas who issue such fatwas, need to be publicly flogged. I know we live in a democracy, but that does not mean that they can say and do anything they want. There are human rights, morality, and law of the land, that all of us need to abide by. Religious zeal, needs to be reined in, when it goes out of hand.

The West has learned this the hard way. 9/11 and 7/7 are too fresh in memory.

If we allow such religious leaders to continue without raising our voice at the very slightest of provocation from these clerics, we will go down the same path.

India has the second largest muslim population among all nations of the world, and the muslim community has been an integral part of the country since time immemorial. Somehow the leadership within the community has in the recent past been either fanatical, or nonchalant. All those who are middle of the road, now need to jump in and abhor such acts. And if the leaders are not ready to do it, then the regular folks like us need to speak out against this.

Freedom of speech does not mean shouting “FIRE” in a packed theater. The clerics are doing exactly that. It was heartening to note that the citizenry of the city thought it fit to defy and come out against such barbarism. The question remains as to why it had to happen in the first place anyways.

These are the two reports that got my blood boiling.

Hoisting flag against fatwas, women march

Rise of the fatwa

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