Hifzur Rahman Qasmi
By: Masood Azizi Nadvi
Translation: Hifzur Rahman Qasmi, Delhi
"Palestine", the Western south part of Syria is located on the shore of the middle white sea in the Western part of Asian continent joining it with the continent of Africa. The earth of Palestinian is one of the oldest civilized areas. According to new discoveries, residents of this very area reached the destination of agricultural strength nine thousand years B. C. which was first ever achievement of the human history. "Ariha" the oldest city of the world was habilitated eight thousand years B. C. on this very soil. Of late, Palestine is the abode of multiple cultures and civilizations. But nowadays, its real citizens are facing much trouble by the hands of the Jews and Israelites. They are really surrounded by difficulties and tests.
Palestine is a holy place. It is the first Qiblah (direction in which Muslims turn for prayers) and third of the holy mosques. The holy Qur'an mentions the sentence "Barakna" (We blessed it) for the holy city of Quds. The event of Isra is also related to this very place. The soil of this earth has been the abode of prophets and religious personalities. The earth of Palestine got more colored by the blood of martyrs than any other Muslim dominant area. On one hand all these facts are accepted, while on the other, it is a tragedy that now this holy place is surrounded by enemies.
The present scenario of Palestine makes it amply clear that the defensive power of Muslims is very less than that of enemies both spiritually and materially. Therefore, Muslims all over the world, in general and those of Palestine in particular, can not overcome the dangers which they face, unless they get united among themselves. Thus it is necessary for them to stand in front of enemies like one being.
United we can be like the shining sun.
Otherwise the scattered stars are good for nothing.
In 636 CE, Muslims came over the city of Quds and since then they had been saving its holiness. But in 1099 CE, the Christians encroached upon the city devastating all its sanctity. However, after a long wilderness and horror, it came again to its real protector by a man of Kurd family, Salahuddin Ayyubi in 1187 CE. It continued as such. The enemies of Islam kept on conspiring. Tudar Herzel put forth the plan of Jew abode for the first time in 1897 CE. At last on 15th May, 1948, Israel was established. Thus after 750 years, the united conspiracy of Jews and Christians and the weakness of Muslims resulted into the loss Palestine from our hands. Then in June, 1967, they encroached upon the Mosque of Aqsa. This is a grim story. It is 42 years since the Masjid-e-Aqsa was trespassed. Despite of all weakness and negligence, Muslims are trying to free it.
Of late, it is necessary to create awareness among Muslims in general and among students of religious education to know about the history of this event and the cause of fall and rise, so that, they can try to find out a solution to the problem of Palestine. For this reason, programmes are held in the world and articles and magazines are published so as to tell Muslims about the 42 years of encroaching and their responsibilities to regain it.
Actually, Palestine is not only a problem of Palestinian Muslims; rather it is the problem of all Muslims living in any corner of the world. And Muslims bear a religious relationship to it. So it is not suitable at all for a Muslim to be unaware and negligent of its problems. It is one of the most sensitive cases of the time. The responsibility to solve it goes to all Muslim countries and all Muslim individuals. Presently Muslims are sunken in the negligence. When they will awake and a Salahuddin Ayyubi will come into being, the victory will kiss their feet. The enemies of Islam who have trespassed this soil with bad intention will suffer defeat.
"Palestine is in fact the abode of Jews", is their argument to establish the Israeli state in Palestine. There lies a story in the background of this argumentation: After the death of the Prophet Moses (pbuh), the sons of Israel went to Palestine and in a state of unsurety they established a state there by the name of "Israel". Then vicissitude of fortune resulted them into a perpetual exile from their own established abode. This argument, however, is totally illogical, because most of the Christians and Arab historians have already accepted the fact that the Arabs had resided there even before the Jews. Apart from that, if the stability of all Muslims, Jews and the Christians in Palestine through out the ages is reviewed, it becomes quite clear that the Muslims and particular Arab Muslims have more right over the reign.
Turning eyes from these facts, let's accept the existence of Jews in Palestine and establishment of a state by the name of Israel before 6th century BC, and it the Promised Land. Thus the Jews have right to cast the Palestinian Muslims and reside themselves. If this logic is accepted, Britain, the creator of Israel must vacate the England for its real residents the Sail. And also Americans will have to vacate America for its old residents, the Red Indians- because they have snatched the nation after killing eight crore Red Indians. This is not enough, but the Japanese too will have to vacate Japan for its real inhabitants. Thus the whole map of the new world will have to change. Span also must be emptied for the Arabs. If this cannot be done, then the only solution to the problems of the Middle East is that Israel should be dissolved and Palestine should be returned to its real residents the Arabs.
History has proved that the base of the tragedy of Palestine was the Arab rebellion against Turks brought out by the greatest creator of Israel. The Balfour Manifesto proposed in 1917 was first step towards Israel and it is the base of the crisis of the Middle East. But now we will analyze that when this manifesto was proposed, what was the position of Ottoman caliphate? What role was played by the Arabs in it? It is said very sorrowfully that the real creator of this crisis was none but the Arab leadership.
The Christian power had been conspiring to finish the Ottoman caliphate since centuries. Long before the 1st world war, the Europe had announced the war against the Turks, which was led by the Britain. A rebellion was created against Turks in the united Balkan, Bulgaria, Serbia and Greece. From 1904 to 1940, most parts of the Europe had got out of the hands of the Turks. In these circumstances, the hue-man's services of Turks, the hegemony of Islam by the virtue of Ottomans, the pride of Turkish Caliphs for dedicating themselves to the Haramain and their determination to confront the European countries with so bravery required that the whole Arabian country must have stood unitedly in favor of the Turks. But woe to communal prejudice and greed for kingdom which compelled the Arabian leader Shareef of Makka not only to avoid the favour of Turks but also to create a rebellion against them. He conspired to finish the Ottoman Caliphate and invited the Britain allies to finish Turks. His all three sons had been working as ambassadors between him and the Britain from 1915 till 1917.
Lawrence of Arabia, a British army employee was a detective of Britain and exposed himself as a friend of the Arabs. Not only he would detect the activities of Arabia but also he would convince the Arabian leadership to take decision according to the will of Britain. Shareef of Makka was convinced that after the fall of the Turks, he would be provided a liberal state of Arabia. Thus the Arabian leadership came against the Turks openly. At last the Britain occupied Palestine some days before the Balfour Manifesto and the Turks were compelled to get out of it on December 8, 1917. Thus if the Balfour Manifesto is the base of Israeli state, then the wrong Arab leadership must be the real cause of Balfour Manifesto. The sorrowful aspect of this Arab-European relationship is that the dream of a liberate state which had been showed to Shareef of Makkah could never come true. This is such a historical fault of the Arabian leadership which the history will never forgive. The Palestine issue will remain unsolvable as long as the leadership of Arabia will be a toy in hands of people like Shareef of Makkah.
The reviews and analysis show that the state of Israel is getting hollow from inside. And it is not improbable. Its cruelty and aggression is crossing the limits. Therefore, Allah Almighty, according to His rule, is bringing it to fall slowly but surely.
It is not hidden from the eyes of intellectuals that only the Holy War, sincere resistance and brave struggle can make our dream to set Palestine free, re-attain the Masjidul Aqsa and the city of Quds and rehabilitate the Palestinians peacefully in the their real abode. Except it, every way goes to the deep valley from where there is no way out. This is such a fact that is explicitly proved not only by historical experiences of Muslims, Jews and Christians, but also by the review of the Palestine issue from the beginning to the end.
Therefore, the solution to the problems of Palestine lies only in the above mentioned agenda and the true Islamic code of life, because Allah Almighty says in the Holy Qur'an "Only you will be exalted, if you have faith." Then what may be the reason of this failure after so long struggle? The reason is quite clear that Muslims are quite empty handed from the Faith which is required for success. As for the Muslim rulers, they too, do not have the required weapon of faith.
Does Muslims and the Muslim governments lack in material things and weapons? Or do they not have intellectual minds? Of course not! What we really lack is strong faith and trust in Allah. We came to believe in America, its material power and our own so called prudence. It is a historical fact that Allah Almighty made the Companions of the Prophet (pbuh) who were far fewer in number overcome the unbelievers who greatly exceeded them in number and material resources. Where has the sense of honour of so many Muslims been lost now?
To solve the problem, political power, continuous struggle, unity and sacrifice, every thing is necessary. But the key factor is the power of faith and conviction. This is the age of test for Muslims in which they are failing. If they pass this exam, then no power of the world can point fingers to them, and not only Palestine but every problem of Muslims will get solved.
Hifzur Rahman Qasmi
Human is referred to as “social animal” in the modern sociology. It clearly reflect the notion that human in fact, is an animal with the only extra characteristic of ‘social nature’ which distinguishes him from other animal species. Irrespective of the reality and meaning of this explanation of human, we come to the thought that the sociology has acknowledged the human an animal. With sharp contrast to this term, Islam has called him ‘the best and noblest of all creatures’. This descriptive difference makes it abundantly clear that Islam holds him in high regards.
Absolutely natural is the idea that the greater the thing, the more significantly it is safeguarded. Thus, Islam has articulated much concern and has, therefore, made brilliant principles to protect the life, wealth and honor of human. To save his life, the Qur’an has presented the maxim of Qisas (Equal Retaliation). (Al-Baqarah: 179) Implementation of this principle makes the safety of life sure. The Qur’anic precept for protection of wealth is “hand cutting” (Al-Maidah: 39) and the countries having it as a part of their penal code are less faced with thievery. The honor and chastity of human being hold paramount import in the eyes of Islam. It, therefore, introduced many effective principles along with developing some valuable strategies for protection. If these principles and strategies are employed, the honor of human is sure to be protected.
After the brutal incident of gang rape in Delhi, the whole nation is demanding capital punishment for the culprits in one breathe. But, had the punishment for this vicious crime proposed by Islam been made a part of the Indian Penal Code, the daughters of the Innocent Marry would not have to wander across the streets of India Gate and the Parliament seeking sure protection for their chastity. The women’s chastity is so a great asset in the eyes of Islam that it does not only issues penalty for the adulterers (stoning to death, if the adulterer is married, and hundred lashes if he/she is single.) but also it considers the allegation of adultery a criminal act and gives punishment for that. (Eighty lashes, if the claimant fails to give sufficient evidence.)
It is well to note here that Islam, against the contemporary blasphemous notion, regard the extra marital coition occurred with mutual unanimity of man and woman too as a heinous sin. Thus, both are liable to be penalized. The reason is that both have broken the moral system which was necessary for survival of the pure social system and prevention of strife. In addition to that, the adultery (committed with mutual consent) makes path for forcible rape.
In short, apart from legalizing these punishments, Islam has also foregrounded some helpful strategies to protect the honor and chastity of the nice gender. But unfortunately, the whole nation is facing unbearable trouble due this menace, but does not even take into consideration the natural strategies to prevent it. Yet, the men of insight are in full agreement with the claim that the society can be purified from this menace, if these strategies are put in practice. Following is the brief sketch of them.
Adultery, a heinous crime: To safeguard the women’s chastity, it is necessary, at first to know the heinousness of adultery. The Holy Qur’an, therefore, described it as an ‘evil act’. And then it commanded man to abstain from it in many verses. While describing the adultery, the Holy Qur’an uses the word ‘Fahisha’ which literally means ‘to cross the limits’. Thus, the adultery means to cross the limits ordained by Allah in the sexual matters. It is known to everybody how great a crime it is to infiltrate the prohibited area crossing the limits. Allah Almighty, therefore, has given the good news of Paradise to those respecting His limits, and also has warned of the Hell to those violating them. (Nisa: 4: 14, 15) Going on the same line, the Prophet (saws) has also described its dangerous consequences. Thus, he declared it a cause of plague (Ibn Majah) at some place; while on the other, he called it a means of drought (Mishkat) and poverty (Baihiqi). Besides that, the Prophet (saws) has given warning of many other bad results of the adultery.
As the first strategy to prevent rape and adultery, the Holy Qur’an tried to instill in the hearts of human the bad impact and evil sides of adultery and also what it results in the life after death. After that, it prohibited man even to come closer to the causes and means which generally leads to the adultery, let alone committing it. (Al-Isra, 33)
Free intimation: To uproot anything completely, one needs to find out their main causes and then to attack strongly on them, so that the cause may finish with the result of ending the main thing. The reason thereof is self evident. If a tree is cut from the surface of the earth and the roots spreading all around are left, they will, again, get some sort of nourishments and then turn into big and strong tree. It is a fact beyond doubt that free intimation of male and female often leads to illicit relationship. Islam, therefore, forbad it to save the chastity of the nice gender. Experiences and observations suggest that no sexual sin occurs until both the genders meet each other freely. Therefore, the Holy Prophet (saws) also prohibited it in many clear ahadith. Hazrat Aqba ibn Aamir (ra) narrates that the Prophet (saws) said, “Avoid entering the non-mahram women.” (Bukhari) This is not enough. Islam has also prohibited from meeting and maintaining frank relationship with brother in-laws. Once, the Prophet (saws) was asked about free intimation with brother in-laws. Upon it he replied, “They are death.” (Mishkaat) The gist of the hadith is that women should fear from them the way they fear from death. That is because, they are more likely to fall into the pitch sin in such case, because it is generally not considered abnormal for these relatives to come and meet their sister in-laws in loneliness. Thus, the society faces such inhuman incidents due to not exercising this injunction that not only violates the value of brotherhood, but it goes to the extent of bloodshed. This is the reason why Islam declared it impermissible.
Lowering gaze: Eyes serve as doors for the heart. When a person beholds anything, its characteristics go straight to his/her heart through the path of eyes. Then, if he/ she finds anything attractive, his/ her heart compels them to attain it. Therefore, Islam prohibited looking at the non-mahrams, so as to protect the women’s chastity. (Al-Nur: 31) if an accident eye falls on them, then they should immediately remove it according to the Islamic law. It is by no means allowed to keep on looking at and fixing one’s eyes. (Jamye Tirmidhi)
Noting on the same line, the women too have been asked not to look at non-mahram males. (Al-Nur: 32) That is because it may create sensation in their own hearts. And also if a man observes a woman looking at him, he naturally finds evil thought emerging in his heart and mind; and ultimately he dares to come nearer to her.
The third point in this regard is that women should wrap themselves with shawls. (Al-Ahzab) if you see tow women at the same place. One is dressed properly in the Islamic style, while the second one is wearing a dress which is either revealing or covering only some parts of the body. Males are more often inclined with illicit intention only to the second one, while he finds a feeling of respect for the women dressed properly.
Proper dressing: Dress has many purposes. Covering the body parts, protection of body from the impact of climate unbalance and decoration are main features. But, covering of the body assumes paramount importance among them. (Al-A’raaf: 27) This purpose can be served only with the clothes which are neither transparent enough to reflect the body parts, nor are the tight enough to reveal the ups and downs. As far as the matter of dress is concerned, this is the highest peak of human development. Islam, therefore, mandated such dresses, because wearing any dress except them would be considered as returning back to orthodoxies. Moreover, the revealing dresses create amorous intentions in the minds of the beholders which put the women chastity at stake. Therefore, Islam has established a special benchmark in matter of clothing for both male and female, so that its purpose can be served the better way.
Seeking permission: Human is entitled to privacy by birth. No one enjoys any right to disturb one’s privacy. Islam, therefore, has issued a legal provision of the social life that permission should be sought before entering other’s house. (Al-Nur: 28) The reason is that every person presumes his/ her house as the safest place for them. No one is, therefore, sure in which condition the householder is within. Thus, if a man enters a house without seeking permission and the women within are not properly covered or dressed, this will created a kind of turmoil condition in the society. Well to note here, this injunction is not meant to be practiced only while entering other’s house, but it also applies in joint family structure. Even the teenagers of the family who have begun to feel and understand the sex inclinations are directed to greet and seek permission before entering the room.
Avoid displaying the beauty: Homes are the safest place for women. They should, therefore, stay at their homes and not go out without any pressing need. But if any crying need calls for outing, they must not decorate themselves and display their beauties. (Al-Ahzab: 33) In the pre-Islamic pagan days, women were given to outing with full make up and display their beauties, because chastity and decency did not have any weigh in their eyes. The Qur’an has termed this situation as “Tabarruj ul jahiliyah”. But this attitude did not suit at all to the noble women. This was the reason why Islam directed them to stay at homes. This does not mean at all that Islam has imprisoned them in the house and closed every door of success and development. They are of course allowed to go out when needed. They are however, directed not to decorate themselves while going out, because it may put their chastity at risk.
This is the Islamic stand in regards with protection of women’s chastity and preventing the sexual crimes. But unfortunately, the advocates of gender equality declared these strategies hurdle in the ways of women’s development; and it resulted into a very drastic consequence. The daughters of Eve are mourning after losing their assets and the politicians and media are using these incidents for their gain. The West declared the adultery punishment prescribed by Islam as cruel, but when the society is filled with strife and the nice gender is always at stake, the whole band of humanity is crying for death punishment in one voice. This strengthens even more the idea that Islam and Islamic maxims are but natural. No matter how far one goes from the nature, one has to return to it one day or the other. It can, therefore, be said with fuller surety today that this world does not have any solid strategy to save women’s chastity and prevent sexual crimes. If it wants, it will have to adopt the Islamic strategy.
Hifzur Rahman Qasmi
Markazul Maarif, Delhi [email@example.com]
Moved by the results and experiences of World War II, the General Assembly of the UNO passed a resolution for protection of ‘human rights’ at global level on December 10, 1948 which later got to be known as ‘Universal Declaration of Human Rights’ (UDHR). The articles assuring the birthrights of human beings at world level, contained in this declaration were based on three basic concepts:
(1) Humanity as a whole
(2) Respect for individuals
(3) A social system based on democratic values
After this declaration, the term ‘Human Rights’ received such a great popularity around the world, especially in the West, that it became a common slogan for every social and political group. In addition to that, the whole concept of ‘human rights’ began to be seen in the secular and non-religious scenario. The advocates of human rights in the west and east, including some Muslim countries, presume and say that the concept of human rights can live only in the secular and non-religious environment. It cannot survive in the religious framework. This is the reason why the secular minded advocates of human rights in Muslim countries like Pakistan and Bangladesh are heard to be reviewing that there is no use talking on the topics like ‘Human Rights and Islam’, because, as a religion, Islam has promoted the concepts and values that are not compatible with the basic concepts of the UDHR. But those, who believe that the UDHR is the greatest and matchless manifesto for human rights and feel contradiction between the principles of human rights and Islamic teachings, really need to embark, once again, on an unbiased comparative study of the basic concepts of the UDHR and Islamic teachings regarding humanity.
When we talk on the topics like ‘Human Rights and Islam’ or ‘Human Rights and Qur’an’, we actually mean that these rights have been bestowed to human beings by Allah, not by any legislative house or a ruler. The rights granted by a ruler or legislative assembly might possibly be abrogated. For example, sometimes a ruler announces many rights for his people when he is in a pleasant and a happy mood. But when he gets out from the castle of pleasant emotions, he suddenly declares all the rights invalid. But the rights granted to human beings by the Qur’an are actually granted by Allah, so no government, legislative or judiciary has the right to make any amendment or abrogation. The principles of human rights put forth by the Holy Qur’an are parts and parcel of the religion of Islam. These are meant to be applied and carried out by every follower of the religion, whether rulers or the ruled ones. The Holy Qur’an has declared its decision about the Muslims denying, amending or violating these principles in the practical life:
“Those who do not judge according to what Allah has revealed are infidels.”
The Holy Qur’an ahs attached values and sanctity to human life as much as it considers the life of one individual equal to the whole society. Thus, in this short article, I do not intend at all to make a comparison between the underlying concepts of the UDHR and the Islamic injunctions about humanity. I only wish to show what the Holy Qur’an has to say about rights of human beings to which they are entitled by birth. In the following paragraphs, I am going to mention some of the rights allotted by the Qur’an under some basic heads.
Right to Protection Wealth and Life: Addressing on the occasion of farewell pilgrimage, the Prophet (SAWS) said, “Your lives and wealth are haram (impermissible) for each other, until you meet your Lord on the Day of Judgment.” Well to be remembered here, this command is not meant only for Muslims, but the Prophet (SAWS) is reported to have said about non-Muslims living in the Islamic territory, “The one, who kills a Dhimmi (non-Muslim given shelter in the Islamic State), will not find even the fragrance of paradise.”
Rights to Protection of Self Respect: Those who shout the slogan human rights impressed by UDHR of the UNO, focus only on human lives. They do not talk about anything beyond, whereas, apart from human lives, the importance of self respect which has been assured by the Qur’an fourteen hundred years ago can be imagined through the following verses.
Allah says: (1) “O, you who believe, no nation should poke fun at another.” (2) “Do not defame each other.” (3) Do not indult anyone by using bad names.” (4) “Do not talk ill behind anyone’s back.”
Right to Privacy: The holy Qur’an considers one’s privacy as one’s birth right and forms principles for its protection. (1) Don’t spy on each other. (2) Do not enter anyone’s house, until you get permission from owners.
Right to Protest against Cruelty: Islam gives right to human beings to protest against the cruelty and corruption of the rulers. The holy Qur’an says, “Allah does not like passing bad comments about anyone else, unless he is the oppressed.”
According to Islamic view point, all types of power and sovereignty are purely Allah’s right. Being Allah’s Deputy on earth, man is allowed to use those powers on His behalf only to maintain discipline in the society. Thus, the one who holds power is responsible before his people and the people are entitled to question him. Keeping this very point in eyes, Hazrat Abu Bakr Siddiq said in his first address after holding the thrown of caliphate, “Assist me, if my stand is right in any matter and reform me, if it is wrong. Continue to follow me as long as I follow the commandments of Allah and His Messenger and discard me when I deviate from the path.”
Right to Justice: everyone is entitled to justice by the Qur’an. Thus it speaks very often about doing and getting justice with remarkable stress. In the context of justice, the Holy Qur’an usually uses two words: Adl and Ihsaan. Both the words give the idea of justice and indicated to the theory of balance, but there is slight difference in the meaning. The wordIhsaan is common in meaning, whereas the word adl is related to accept and encourage merits of individuals. According to the Holy Qur’an, man cannot be judged on the basis of his lineage, sex, wealth and his worldly achievements, but the only criterion to judge man’s merit is hisTaqwa (piety) which comprises both belief and good deeds.
Right to freedom of expression: the Islamic state provides its every citizen the right to the freedom of thought and expression, provided that this right is used to spread and promote the truth and righteousness, and not to propagate evil and mischief. The concept of the freedom of expression presented by Islam is far better as compared to that of West. In no case, Islam allows to use this right for the propagation of evil and mischief. Since Islam likes the policy of moderation and balance in every matter, it allows no man to use filthy and immoral language in the name of criticism. In the blessed prophetic period, the Companions used to enquire about any matter if something has been revealed from Allah. If the Prophet (SAWS) would reply negation, they would express their opinions with no delay in that particular matter.
Basically, in the Islamic perspective, the right to freedom of expression means the right to speak the truth. In the Qur’anic terminology, the truthfulness is referred to as “Haque” which is a special attribute of Allah. Thus, truthfulness is not only the right of every human, but it is a responsibility on the shoulder of the believer to speak only the truth in every case, even if it is in the presence of a cruel ruler. The Holy Qur’an commands Muslims to stand still for the cause of the truth and prohibits the society from torturing on account of speaking the truth.
Right to Belief and Religion: the Holy Qur’an gives a general principle that ‘There is no compulsion in religion.’ That is because the Holy Qur’an is well acquainted with the fact that belief resides n the heart and the heart can never be commanded. In contrast to that, the Totalitarian Societies snatch all sorts of freedom from the individuals and a new kind of slavery in imposed on human beings. At a time, slavery implied full authority of an individual over another. This kind of slavery has been rejected by the law; the Totalitarian Societies have imposed a new kind of slavery instead.
Right to Protection of Religious Sentiments: Besides belief and conscience, Islam holds the religious sentiments of man in high regards as well. Thus, the Holy Qur’an prohibits Muslims to speak such words which hurt the sentiments of the followers of other religions. Numerous verses of the QUr’an clarifies that the responsibility of the Prophet (SAWS) was only to preach the Truth and not to compel anyone for acceptance. So, the Holy Qur’an also prohibited every action which compels a non-Muslim to accept Islam. It was possible that a Muslim would hurt the sentiment of a non-Muslim living in the Islamic State, so that he might accept Islam. But the Holy Qur’an completely uprooted all such kinds of possibilities by the verse: “Do not abuse those who call some other deity than Allah.”
Right to Freedom of Person: Human being is free by birth and freedom is his birthright. The greatest guarantee towards this right of human being in Islam is that no one can confine it except Allah. This idea is derived from the verse of the Holy Qur’an in which Allah says that “The right to judge the ordinances and prohibitions is with Allah alone.” This is the reason why neither the judiciary, nor the legislative in an Islamic State can compel the citizens on undue obedience. Therefore, the Prophet himself used to seek advice from his companions in public matters.
Right to Education: Education is necessary for the development of humanity. It is, therefore, counted among the basic rights of the citizens in all countries today. But the holy Qur’an has attached much stress with education since its early revelation. Thus, the very first revelation of the Qur’an encourages its addresses to acquire education. According to the Holy Qur’an education is the only weapon which can form a peaceful and a just society. Therefore, the Qur’an addresses man to ‘acquire knowledge, for those who are cognizant cannot be equal to those who are not cognizant.’
These were some points which serve as legitimate examples. In fact the Holy Qur’an gives man all rights which he should get as a human being in open terms. Even then, if man studies it with western mindset, he will surely get weakness in it. But this will not lessen the importance of the Holy Qur’an, because it is not a sin of the sun, if a bat does not behold in day light.
by Muhammadullah Qasmi
(modified and latest version)
In our daily newspapers, rape rears its ugly façade almost every day. Sometimes, it is a brutal rape and murder by a stranger, gang-rape of a girl by her acquaintances or in many cases rape of a girl by her own father or elderly relatives. In recent years, there has been an alarming rise in ratio of rape in India. It is becoming such a common thing in our newspapers that we are apt to not even pay any remarkable attention.
The recent gang-rape of a medical student in Delhi bus provoked unprecedented protests throughout India. It is good sign that people are waking up to get their right of safety and security. But, on the other hand, at the same time when Delhi was raging with mass protests the rape cases continued unabated in the length and breadth of the country.
Police records show high incidence of crimes against women in India. The National Crime Records Bureau reported in 1998 that the growth rate of crimes against women would be higher than the population growth rate by 2010. Earlier, many cases were not registered with the police due to the social stigma attached to rape and molestation cases. Official statistics show that there has been a dramatic increase in the number of reported crimes against women. According to the latest data by National Crime Record Bureau (NCRB), with 24206 cases in 2011, rape cases jumped to incredible increase of 873 % from 1971 when the oldest case of rape was first recorded by NCRB. Even in 1971, there were 2043 cases of rape, the NCRB.
These are the cases that are registered in police stations. While a vast majority of the cases go unreported.
Reasons & Solutions
In view of the startling situation one naturally is forced to think what the reason of the increasing criminal and barbaric trends in Indian youths is. One thing is noticeable that as the country is heading rapidly to globalization and westernization the ratio of such crimes is going higher and higher. Globalization has caused a significant change in the Indian culture, society and scenario. Late night party cultures, discos, dating clubs, fashion shows and beauty contests have increased in numbers in the past 10 years. The satellite and cable TV channels have grown and they broadcast materials containing sexual assaults, rapes and other crimes. Also, this decade has witnessed a huge increase in pornography materials both in CDs and on Internet. The Indian entertainment industry (national and regional) and media which have access nearly to every house, present bold scenes and nudity as fashion and symbol of higher lifestyle. Moreover, the youths are heavily getting addicted to drugs and other intoxicant stuffs.
If we have a cursory view at the atmosphere in which we are living it may give us an ample understanding of the current outbreak of crimes against women. If you around at the electronic and print media, the entertainment industry, even day-to-day products they survive on nudity and project women as ‘play thing which are meant only to enjoy’.
At the same time, it is regretful that Indian women have gone far away in following the western culture in terms of nudity, immodesty and fashionable lifestyle. The good and constructive aspects of western culture such as discipline, hard work, dedication, tolerance, transparency, honesty, incorruptness etc are neglected. While on the contrary, the superficial glitters are accepted as a source to climb the zenith of development and intellectualism. The way the daughters are dressed and nurtured is very dangerous for them and ultimately for the society. This has caused havoc in our social system and the sanctity of relations and respect of humanity is falling apart.
One who has an observation of recent social disorder and betrayal from the cultural and religious values is quite sure that the latest increasing trends of sexual violence against women are based on the changing scenario of our social system. It is quite surprising event and one is forced to think when we have a free and open society where men and women are free to make friends, have affairs, go to brothels and enjoy their life as they wish, then why some monsters prey girls to fulfil their lust. But, on the contrary, with the rise of globalization and westernization the crime ratio is on the rise. In USA, the hub of western culture, the ration of rapes and other crimes against women is even higher. This is a clear proof that the direction to which our social system is headed is devastative and deadly.
As Muslims we believe that the guidelines that Muslims have been given by Glorious Quran and a Hadith are the ultimate points to find a peaceful and flourishing society. And, being followers of the only heavenly and most authentic religion, we can claim that the social and moral teachings of Islam can guarantee peace, tranquillity and safety if they are truly implemented. In order to get the society peaceful, safe and flourishing Islam has introduced complete social system. Unlike the current social systems, which hypocritically ban the consequences such as rape and sexual violence but leave the doors flung open by allowing the causes from where crimes creep in the society. But, Islam, on one hand, strictly deals with crimes like adultery and rape while on the other it roots out the immediate causes of the crime and regards them also illegal.
Islam has introduced strict penal codes for social crimes so that none dare to commit it. It set up such rules and commandments that narrow down the trends of committing such crimes. First, Islam has ordained it followers to cover their body necessarily every time; the men have to cover from pelvis to knee, while the women have to cover their entire body except their face, hands and feet. Islam has asked women to observe purdah form her distant relatives and strange men. The Glorious Quran enjoins Muslim men and women to lover their gaze and maintain modesty:
“Tell the believing men to lower their gaze and to be modest. This is purer for them. Allah is fully Aware of what they do. And tell the believing women to lower their gaze, and preserve their chastity, and to display of their adornment only that which is apparent. They shall draw their veils over their bosoms, and shall not reveal their adornment save to their own husbands, their fathers, the fathers of their husbands, their sons, the sons of their husbands, their brothers, the sons of their brothers, the sons of their sisters, other women, the male attendants who lack natural vigour, or the children who have no knowledge of sex. They shall not strike their feet (when they walk) in order to reveal what they hide of their adornment. And turn to Allah together, O believers so that you may succeed.”
Women are recommended to wear modest clothes and not reveal their body and structure that may be sexually provocative to the opposite sex. In view of the women’s biological nature and their physical structure, Islam has asked women to, preferably, stay in their houses and not go out:
“Stay in your homes, and do not display your finery as women used to do in the old days of ignorance.”
However, due to some compulsions and reasons, if any woman has to go out she has been enjoined to maintain modesty and wear Hijab*:
“O prophet, enjoin your wives, your daughters, and the wives of the believers that they draw their veils close round them. That is more proper, so that they may be recognized (as righteous women) and not molested.”
To get the society free from crimes, the spate of pornographic materials must be strictly banned. The media, TV channels and cinema which present and publish vulgar materials must be censored. However, it heavily depends on our womenfolk whether they are careful to safeguard their modesty and self-respect or not.
Likewise, drugs and alcohol is a major source of crimes in the society. According to reports, most of the rapists found drunken at the time of crime. The easy access to alcohol and its rampant spread also causing an alarming in the crime ratio. Therefore, this aspect is also needs our urgent attention and preventive measures.
After all, our youths and new generations need to be given more and more morals teachings and social values which are almost zero in our prevailing education system.
 The Glorious Quran, Al-noor 24/30-31
 The Glorious Quran, Aa-ahzab, 33/33
 The Glorious Quran, Al-ahzab, 33/59