We are not sure if Eidul Fitr is declared in Delhi for Friday, 15 June, following 29 days of Ramadhan, will it be for Mumbai too because then they will have observed only 28 days of Ramadhan and in the lunar calendar a complete month is either of 29 or 30 days only?
By M. Burhanuddin Qasmi*
From the early days of Islam, Hilal, Crescent in English, is very significant in all Muslims' social and religious functioning across the globe. The Islamic or Hijrah calendar, which began from the day when Prophet Mohammad (saws) first set for Hijrah (migration journey) with his friend Abu Bakr from Makkah to Madinah on 12/13 September 622 CE, is officially followed by most Muslim countries in the world. This is lunar calendar and revolves around the moon sighting in each month. Similarly all major Muslim festivals and worship like the beginning of the month of Ramadhan, Eidul Fitr, Hajj and Eidul Adha are actually based on moon sighting around the world.
The 57 OIC member states or Muslim countries, including 22 Arab nations, have developed some sorts of moon sighting mechanism. Among them are Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Malaysia, which are equipped with advanced technological means and both astronomical and religious resources to deal with one of the very important issues of Muslims – the new moon or the crescent which impacts their day-to-day business as all as religious practices. Majority of independent gulf countries, though place their own means to see the Eid and Ramadhan crescent, they follow the announcement from Saudi Arabia only.
One hardly finds any dispute among the citizens of a Muslim country with Ramadhan or Eid moon. All citizens of a country, at least, begin fasting with unity and celebrate Eids together without much botheration about moon sighting as how, where and who sighted the new moon. This is mainly because the moon sighting mechanism there is unified and controlled by the governments under the supervision of expert scholars. The case was the same in India too in the pre-British Muslim era with even a larger size and landscape of the country.
The modern India with nearly 180 million Muslims living here, which is 11 percent of total 1.8 billion world Muslim population and roughly half of the total population of 22 Arab League countries put together, could not develop a system with all easy means of communication and advanced technology of twenty first century era by which one country one date, one day of Eid, same day of beginning of Ramadhan for all Muslims and a same day of national holiday can be assured for all Indians. The religion of Islam in India is as old as it has been in any Arab country. The shores of Malabar in the South and the coast of Konkan in the West found the light of Islam as early as during the life time of Prophet Mohammad (saws) in 624 CE and during the reign of second caliph Umar bin al-Khattab (634 – 644 CE) respectively.
This year in 2018 the Islamic month of Ramadhan began in two different dates in India and this can be the case with Eidul Fitr too. The metro city of Mumbai along with a few adjacent cities to it and some other places here and there began fasting on Friday, that was 18 May and rest of the country from South to North and from East to West began their Fast on Thursday, 17 May, 2018. The new moon for the month of Ramadhan was sighted in three Southern states of India – Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Telangana on Wednesday, 16 May besides Kerala, which generally follows Saudi Arabia in matters of moon sighting, Arab countries and other neighboring Muslim countries. The Chennai, Bangalore and Hyderabad Hilal Committees, therefore, officially made announcements for the beginning of the month of Ramadhan from Thursday, 17 June, so was the announcements from Riyadh, Kabul and Islamabad.
The Indian Hilal Committees in rest of India like Imarat-e Shariah Bihar, Jharkhand and Orissa, Jamiat Ulama-e Hind and the Central Hilal Committees of Jama Masjid Delhi and Nakhoda Masjid, Kolkata after due consideration went with South Indian announcements thus declared Thursday, 17 May, the first day of Ramadhanul Mubarak for the year 1439 AH or 2018 CE. On the other hand, the Hilal Committees of Mumbai both from Deobandi and Barelvi schools rejected announcements from southern states and did not consider witnesses or proofs of moon sighting from that part of India positively thus they declared on 16 May that the moon of Ramadhan was not sighted this evening, therefore, the first day of Ramadhan would be on Friday, 18 May, 2018 only.
This, however, was again rejected by Ahle Hadith group in Mumbai which officially went with its main body in Delhi and declared 17 June, Friday, as the first day of Ramadhan. Members of Ahle Hadith School in Mumbai and a few individuals from Deoband School who did not find the decision of Central Hilal Committee of Jama Masjid Mumbai convincing went with rest of India and observed Fast from Thursday. Mumbai itself is a divided city as far as beginning of Ramadhan is concerned in this 2018, majority of Muslim Mumbaikers began fasting from 18 June, Friday, but a section of Muslims within the city did observe Roza from the previous day.
The pertaining question arises here is, why this is so? If Hilal Committees situated as far as in Guwahati, Kolkata, Patna, Lucknow and Delhi find it acceptable to go with Chennai, Bangalore and Hyderabad, then why the same Hilal Committees of Mumbai who are just a few hundred kms away from some of these South Indian cities find it unacceptable? If rest of India considers the Crescent in the sky over the Indian city of Chennai is same for whole of India then why some of the members of Mumbai Hilal Committees make it an issue and decide otherwise? Are these gentlemen religiously and scientifically capable enough to make such a bold overturn which impacts millions? They might have, of course, some arguments to put forth but the main issue is not done. There is a confusion among common Muslims, when will be Eid and whom to follow.
Something is seriously wrong somewhere. Muslims of India need to fix it sooner than later and once for all. At one point of time both Mumbai and rest of India cannot be right or wrong in the same issue with different decisions. One party is right and the other one is obviously wrong, this is common sense.
This is uncalled for and against beautiful unity of Islam that two Muslims living as neighbors in the same city but one is fasting and the other is celebrating Eid! There is no complication in Islamic Fiqh (jurisprudence) in this issue. Muslim scholars have unanimously resolved the issue of moon sighting much earlier in India. The Hanafi school of Fiqh which is followed by majority Muslims in Indian sub-continent makes it clear that matla (astronomic boundary of moon) will be considered same for an entire country. Therefore, moon sighted in Karnataka or Chennai will be considered for all of India. The same is placed in the constitution of Central Hilal Committee of Jama Masjid Mumbai under article No 12, it reads: “(A) the difference in Mataly (plural of matla) is valid. (B) Our country India is a single matla.”
It is obviously clear that the problem is not with Islamic text, nor with Fiqh, it may be with the understanding or explanation of the text by certain individuals. Hence, this whole mess of Roza beginning in different dates within India and subsequently a possible Eid on different days in Delhi and Mumbai is a creation of various Hilal Committees which cropped up like unwanted plants in the rainy season on streets at all major district centers, big cities and the states of India. We have a Hilal Committee in Kishanganj of Bihar which makes announcement contrary to what the one in Patna has done from Bihar’s capital city. Similarly, Bhatkal of Karnataka and Malegaon of Maharashtra have their own Hilal Committees in addition to those in their capital cities. Pune which is just 150 kms from Mumbai has a different Hilal Committee which decided to begin with Ramadhan Fast from 17th June this year, with rest of India, and did not follow Mumbai.
The issue has been of lack of coordination and trust among various Hilal Committees in India. There seems to be a race of branding and marketing among some Muslims NGOs with this pure spiritual issue of moon sighting as whose letterhead would go first in public with a text message for media and social networking groups with news of the Crescent either sighted or not sighted, hereby the particular name of NGO avails popularity.
Muslim Indians can permanently resolve this serious issue by adopting one of the following three options:
Jamiat Ulama-e Hind, with pan India mass bases, and All India Muslim Personal Law Board, an umbrella body with members from all Muslim sects, may initiate the process if they wish to keep it free from government influence. Else now or then a Central Government will take the call to settle the boiling issue without much opposition from common Muslims.
*M. Burhanuddin Qasmi
Editor, English monthly Eastern Crescent, Mumbai
Director, Markazul Ma'arif Education and Research Centree
Patliputra Nagar, Oshiwara, Jogeshwari (W), Mumbai - 102
I shared this post from Sumayya B Willaimson's timeline...
Please read and forward it to all Muslims Who ask for gender equality.
Question posed By Sister Sarah was:
*On March 18, 2005 Amina Wadud led the first female-led Jumu`ah Prayer. On that day, women took a huge step towards being more like men. But, did we come closer to actualizing our God-given liberation?*
Thank you for your inspiring question!
Well, answering your question, I can say that I don’t think so.
What we so often forget is that God has honored women by giving them value in relation to God—not in relation to men. But as Western feminism erases God from the scene, there is no standard left but men.
As a result, the Western feminist is forced to find her value in relation to a man. And in so doing, she has accepted a faulty assumption. She has accepted that man is the standard, and thus a woman can never be a full human being until she becomes just like a man—the standard.
When a man cut his hair short, she wanted to cut her hair short. When a man joined the army, she wanted to join the army, and so on. She wanted these things for no other reason than because the “standard” had it.
What she didn’t recognize was that God dignifies both men and women in their distinctiveness, not their sameness. And on March 18, Muslim women made the very same mistake.
For 1,400 years, there has been a consensus of scholars that men are to lead prayer. As a Muslim woman, why does this matter? The one who leads prayer is not spiritually superior in any way.
Something is not better just because a man does it. And leading Prayer is not better just because it is leading.
Had it been the role of women or had it been more divine, why wouldn’t the Prophet have asked Lady `A’ishah or Lady Khadijah, or Lady Fatimah—the greatest women of all time—to lead?
These women were promised heaven and yet they never led prayer.
But now, for the first time in 1,400 years, we look at a man leading prayer and we think, “that’s not fair.” We think so, although God has given no special privilege to the one who leads. The imam is no higher in the eyes of God than the one who prays behind him.
On the other hand, only a woman can be a mother. And the Creator has given special privilege to a mother. The Prophet taught us that heaven lies at the feet of mothers. But no matter what a man does, he can never be a mother. So why is that not unfair?
When asked who is most deserving of our kind treatment? The Prophet replied “your mother” three times before saying “your father” only once. Isn’t that sexist? No matter what a man does, he will never be able to have the status of a mother.
And yet even when God honors us with something uniquely feminine, we are too busy trying to find our worth in reference to men, to value it or even notice it. We too have accepted men as the standard; so anything uniquely feminine is, by definition, “inferior”.
Being sensitive is an insult, becoming a mother is a degradation. In the battle between stoic rationality (considered masculine) and selfless compassion (considered feminine), rationality reigns supreme.
As soon as we accept that everything a man has and does is better, all that follows is just a knee jerk reaction: if men have it, we want it too. If men pray in the front rows, we assume this is better, so we want to pray in the front rows too.
If men lead prayer, we assume the imam is closer to God, so we want to lead prayer too.
Somewhere along the line, we’ve accepted the notion that having a position of worldly leadership is some indication of one’s position with God.
A Muslim woman does not need to degrade herself in this way. She has God as a standard. She has God to give her value; she doesn’t need a man here.
In fact, in our crusade to follow men, we, as women, never even stopped to examine the possibility that what we have is better for us. In some cases, we even gave up what was higher only to be like men.
Fifty years ago, we saw men leaving the home to work in factories. We were mothers. And yet, we saw men doing it, so we wanted to do it too. Somehow, we considered it women’s liberation to abandon the raising of another human being in order to work on a machine.
We accepted that working in a factory was superior to raising the foundation of society—just because a man did it.
Then after working, we were expected to be superhuman—the perfect mother, the perfect wife, the perfect homemaker, and have the perfect career. And while there is nothing wrong, by definition, with a woman having a career, we soon came to realize what we had sacrificed by blindly mimicking men.
We watched as our children became strangers, and soon recognized the privilege we’d given up.
And so only now—given the choice—women in the West are choosing to stay home to raise their children. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, only 31 percent of mothers with babies, and 18 percent of mothers with two or more children, are working full time.
And of those working mothers, a survey conducted by Parenting Magazine in 2000, found that 93 percent of them say they would rather be home with their kids, but are compelled to work due to “financial obligations.”
These “obligations” are imposed on women by the gender sameness of the modern West and removed from women by the gender distinctiveness of Islam.
It took women in the West almost a century of experimentation to realize a privilege given to Muslim women 1,400 years ago. Given my privilege as a woman, I only degrade myself by trying to be something I’m not, and in all honesty, don’t want to be—a man.
As women, we will never reach true liberation until we stop trying to mimic men and value the beauty in our own God given distinctiveness.
If given a choice between stoic justice and compassion, I choose compassion. And if given a choice between worldly leadership and heaven at my feet, I choose heaven.
I hope my words answer your question. In case you have any comment or you need more about the topic, please don’t hesitate to contact us again.
Thank you and please keep in touch.
_Muhammadullah Khalili Qasmi
This is the tragedy of our time that our youths are bent on accepting every glitter of the modern era as fashion and symbol of progress. There are many things that, at first sight, seem odd, strange and indecent, but with the gust of advertisements, media coverage and competitions of commercial institutions it is made in to a popular fact. In recent years, a new phenomenon has spread among the youths - males and females alike – to celebrate Valentine’s Day, a holiday dedicated to lovers. This celebration was rarely known by any Indian youth some decades ago, though it might have been celebrated in western world.
St Valentine’s Day is celebrated on 14th February by sending greeting cards or gifts to express love to one’s beloved. The cards are generally designed with hearts to symbolize love. Now, the craze of celebrating St Valentine’s Day is increasing year by year in Asian countries, especially developing nations like India. As the Valentine’s Day approaches nearer florists pile up love cards, gifts and bounties of flowers, the general stores sell Valentine chocolates, cakes and other gifts. The barbers cut hearts into men's head hair, restaurants promote Valentine's Day dinners. Newspapers publish romantic and flirting messages. The satellite channels are not lagging behind even an inch; they present special features and organize love-letter competitions. Internet dating services enjoy a rise in surfing and telecommunication companies record high surge in outgoing and incoming calls.
This phenomenon is spreading many unholy things and in our society as well the mind of younger generation. Of course, love is a natural feeling and valuable asset of human life, but not the love that spoils their life and involves many other wrong aspects.
Baseless Historical Background
There is a lot of debate and disagreement among scholars about the origin of Valentine’s Day. However, this is certain that this is celebrated in the memory of some Valentine. Also, this is another historical fact that there have been more than one Valentines who were martyred in early centuries of Christianity.
But, as far as the matter of its origin is concerned it goes back to ancient Rome before the Romans embraced Christianity. In ancient Rome, there was celebrated a holiday on February 14th in the honour of Juno Fructifier, Queen of the Roman gods and goddesses. The other day on February 15, they celebrated the feast of Lupercalis which was originally a festival of shepherds, and was primarily for the purpose to secure fertility for the fields, the flocks, and the shepherds themselves. There were many myths associated with this festival and many dirty rituals were performed.
When Christianity spread in Rome, the celebration of the pagan festivals persisted among them. The Christian Romans continued to celebrate these festivals, until came Pope Gelasius I who abolished Lupercalis and declared in 496 that the feast of St. Valentine would be on February 14. Thus, the ancient Roman Lupercalis festival was replaced by a new Valentine’s Day.
Who was this Valentine; there is no specific information about him. There was more than one person in Rome with similar name who existed during the early years of the church, two or three of whom were martyred. It was said that there were two of them, or that there was only one, who died in Rome as the result of the persecution of the Gothic leader Claudius.
But, why was he killed, this question also remains deprived of a clear-cut answer. It is also said that Saint Valentine advocated love and peace, therefore he was martyred. It is also said that the Roman emperor Claudius II sentenced St Valentine to be executed because of his opposition of government order that prohibited soldiers to marry. It is also perceived that Valentine fell in love with the jailer's daughter. The emperor offered him to pardon and make him one of his closest confidantes if he forsook Christianity, which Valentine refused and preferred martyrdom. He was executed on 14 February 270 CE, on the eve of February 15, the festival of Lupercalis.
Thus, the pagan Roman festival of Lupercalis was transformed into Valentine’s Day and was called the Feast of Lovers, and Saint Valentine was considered to be the patron saint of lovers.
Irrelevance of Valentine’s Day
However, whatever the reality may be, but one thing seems clear that none of the narrations appears to have much to do with love or romance that we see is observed on Valentine’s Day. If the Christians celebrate this day in the memory of their martyr, then it is something that looks sound, but what the Muslims and other people of faith have to do with this? Not only it is nonsense for Muslims and others, but also for Christians as well, because today’s Valentine’s Day has no relation to the sacrifice for truth that was offered by St Valentine, as they claim.
And, if it is historically true that Valentine was killed in punishment of having love affairs with a girl, then the entire story takes a U turn and instead of being ‘a cause of pride’ becomes ‘a matter of shame’. Being a saint he commits such kind of act. And, more shameful is the act of those who celebrate this day in his remembrance.
The Valentine’s Day celebration is entirely based on groundless historical myths. How surprising it is that if an unmeaning and baseless ritual is celebrated by other people of faith it is taunted as ‘mythology’ and ‘orthodoxy’, but if it is practiced by the western world it becomes a symbol of progress and intellectualism!
In the society we live, every thing is based on commercial foundations. Why only education, even the human parts and human dignity is a saleable commodity. The culture of celebrating ‘Days’ is actually the invention of the Capitalism, which primarily aims at devouring the common man’s wealth and amassing it up. The commercial companies give push to ‘Celebrations’ and ‘Days’ in order to boost their products. They do not miss even a single opportunity to take out money from the pockets of people. Schemes are announced, concessions are declared and the public is seduced to achieve it in order to be in pace with the world and to be called progressive, whether they are not able to afford it.
The Muslims’ history is full of such personalities who bravely sacrificed their lives in order to guard their mission and religion. But, Islam is a natural and simple religion, it did not like to burden the people with the loads of continual festivals and celebrations as it slows down their march to spirituality and affect the common man financially.
We Indians, especially Muslims, instead of imitating the West should be proud of our own culture and social order where the foundation of love, affection and relationship is far deeper and stronger than in the West. Why to fall in inferiority complex, be proud of your own invaluable asset that is quite perfect and matchless!
Published in Milli Gazette (Delhi) and Eastern Crescent (Mumbai).
Darul Uloom Deoband
There are repeated requests from within India and outside that Darul Uloom Deoband should express its view regarding the Ruju (revocation) of Maulana Muhammad Saad from his comments about the Prophet Musa (peace be upon him).
It is hereby clarified that as far the Ruju of Maulana Muhammad Saad from this particular issue is concerned it is somehow satisfactory, but the ideological divergence of Maulana Muhammad Saad to which Darul Uloom Deoband has pointed out in its Stand cannot be ignored at all; this is because even after so-called Ruju he continues to make several other statements wherein he adopts the same innovative style, baseless conclusions and unwarranted application of Islamic resources (nusus) to his peculiar ideology of Dawah. This is the reason that not only we (the servants of Darul Uloom Deoband) rather the other Ulama-e-Haq are very much worried due to the overall ideological approach of Maulana Muhammad Saad.
It is our assertion that the least diversion from the path of Akabir (pious predecessors) is immensely harmful. Therefore, following the footstep of the predecessors, Maulana Muhammad Saad should be cautious enough in his statements and should stop the personal deductions (ijtihadat) from the Quran and Hadith; since his innovative deductions and interpretations denote as if he is bent to formulate a new group which will be different from the way of Ahl al-Sunnah wa al-Jama’at and Akabir. May Allah keep us firm and steadfast on the track of our pious predecessors, Amen!
Those who turn to us in this regard are once again reminded that Darul Uloom Deoband has distanced itself from the internal dispute of Tablighi Jamat and it has declared its impartiality clearly from the beginning. However, whenever people approach Darul Uloom for its views about wrong ideologies and thoughts, Darul Uloom always strives to guide the Ummah considering it its religious duty.
(Maulana Mufti) Abul Qasim Nomani
(Maulana Mufti) Sayeed Ahmad Palanpuri
(Maulana Syed) Arshad Madani
Date 13/05/1439 AH / 31/01/2018
Muhammadullah Khalili Qasmi*
There is much hue and cry about a fatwa of Darul Uloom Deoband regarding bank employment in national electronic and print media. The social media were also abuzz with comments and remarks on the issue.
The whole issue is that a youth submitted a question in Darul Uloom Deoband’s Darul Ifta saying that he has some proposals for marriage and one of them is from a daughter of bank employee, what should he do? The Mufti of Darul Uloom replied him that it is not preferable to accept the proposal from bank employee, rather he should prefer proposal from religious and pious families. It was a kind of advice to the person concerned who asked the question. This answer can be applicable for those who have the same case and want to follow the fatwa.
The second misconception is that each fatwa is taken as diktat and general injunction, and it is not understood within its confines. Sometimes a fatwa given as advice or directive principle, but it is taken as command for all.
In order to understand the issue in its entirety, we have to understand some basic principles of Islam. The first and foremost thing is that interest or usury is categorically prohibited in Islam with the Quran declaring it is as unlawful in several verses (2:275, 2:276, 3:130, 4:161 and 30:39) and while one verse regards it tantamount to declaring war against Allah Almighty and His Messenger (peace be upon him) (See: al-Quran 2:278).
Interest is forbidden in Islam, as it disturbs the proper circulation of wealth in the society and badly affects the poor people. There are several Hadiths regarding the prohibition of interest. One Hadith says that Allah’s curse visits one who consumes interest, the one who gives it to others, the one who writes it down and the one who bears witness to it; they are all the same. (Sahih Muslim, Hadith No. 1598)
This is the reason that interest is the big factor in economics and financial issues as per the Islamic Shariah. A Muslim must avoid a deal, transaction or work which involves interest in any way. Thus, having a job in bank is also primarily not allowed as one working in bank may not avoid involvement in interest-based dealings by writing the interest based dealing or in some other way. However, if one has a job in bank which is free from any involvement in writing interest or bearing witness to interest, then his job is allowable.
Therefore, if any Muslim is seeking job, he is advised to avoid bank job which may get him involved in interest-based work. However, if one is already in the bank job, he is advised not to leave it immediately rather look for some lawful and pure income source while continuing to seek forgiveness from Allah due to involvement in interest. Moreover, such a person should give the amount of salary in charity (to a poor) which he earned against the interest based work.
Second important thing to remember is that Islam has attached much importance with regard to purity of income and its consumption. Abstaining haram and acquiring halal is as much necessary for the Muslims as the observance of Salah and payment of Zakah. Unlawful and impure income can lead a Muslim to many troubles and punishments in this world and the Hereafter, while halal and pure income helps him progress in faith and perfect his spirituality. Income earned through unlawful sources like gambling, bribe, interest, theft etc must be avoided as the Quran says that those devouring the wealth unjustly are as if they are filling fire in their stomach. (4:10) Moreover, Hadith says that the flesh grown out of unlawful income deserves to be thrown in Hell Fire (Sunan al-Tirmidhi, Hadith No. 558), while another Hadith says that the prayers and worships of haram consumers will not be acceptable to Allah. (Al-Mujam al-Ausat, 6:311) Therefore, purity of income is one of the most important teachings of Islam.
There are many misconceptions in people even regarding many issues related to interest which must be clarified. The first doubt is that interest received bank is not the usury (riba) prohibited in the Quran. It is to be pretty much clear that the interest given by conventional banks falls under the category of riba (prohibited interest) according the Muslims jurists (Muftis and Ulama) and Fiqh academies of India and Islamic World.
Some people object if banking system is not approved by Islamic Shariah, then opening bank account and depositing money in banks is also contribution to banking system and thus it should be unlawful. It should be clear enough that opening accounts in banks and keeping money therein for safety is alright and it carries no prohibition. But the interest earned in the account may not be used in personal needs, rather should be either given in charity to the poor or paid in income tax etc.
It is also objected that the banks or the government gives salaries to their employees from interest or haram money, thus every government job must be unlawful. It should be noted that the salary of an employee becomes halal or haram on the basis of his own work irrespective of government income source; if his work is halal then his salary will be halal and if it is otherwise then his salary will be haram and unlawful. If his work is combines both halal and haram work, then the portion of income earned against haram work will become haram and impure.
Finding a life partner is one of the important steps of life that needs much care deliberation. The Hadith also says that a woman is married for four reasons; her wealth, her family status, her beauty and her religion. So you should marry the religious woman, otherwise you will be a loser. (Sahih al-Bukhari, Hadith No. 4700)
In the light of the abovementioned Quranic verses and Hadith references, you can decide whether the respected Mufti was right in advising the young man to avoid a proposal from bank employee and look for marrying in a pious family. Darul Uloom Deoband and other madrasas and Islamic institutions take it as their utmost responsibility to guide Muslims in the light of the Quran and Hadith.
 For instance, you can refer to the decisions and resolutions of Islamic Fiqh Academy India (http://ifa-india.org/index.php?do=home&pageid=economic) and International Islamic Fiqh Academy of World Muslim League (http://www.iifa-aifi.org/1990.html)
* Coordinator, Online Fatwa Dept, Darul Uloom Deoband
By M. Burhanuddin Qasmi
It is not realistic that a fight or a contest will be won by both or all the contesting parties simultaneously. The stronger, the better fighter and the one with better strategy always wins and the winner is one. What is important is the fight or contest itself. The contesting parties must fight with all and best of their abilities. Their spirit of fight must be visible for the audience out of the arena.
We have seen very recently that the Congress has given up in Himachal Pradesh but put a tough fight in Gujarat elections against BJP. Every genuine critic has recognized that although Congress lost Gujarat in numbers but it was able to put challenges on face of BJP street by street which may help the Party in upcoming days, if it remains intact with the people of Gujarat.
The recent Triple Talaq Bill passed by the Lok Sabha is actually a bill against Islamic Talaq as a whole and not only Triple Talaq. The definition of Talaq-e Bid’ah in the Bill is ambiguous and utterly confusing. It covers all forms of Talaq which is enforceable with immediate effect. It means one Talaq Baien and one Talaq Ra’jie given in the monthly period time of a woman (which is also Talaq-e Bid’ah) comes under vigorous punishment and fine. Thus the Bill is entirely against the Qur’an and all juristic schools of Islamic Shariah including Ahle Hadith denomination. It is against Islam and practices of all Muslims in the world.
The Bill is passed in the Lower House with unexpected ease on 28 December 2017 and will be passed in the Upper House of Parliament too. 160 million Muslims of India could not put a fight before the ruling party is a fact and history will put it on record. Muslim Indians need to analyze it with cool minds and realistic attitude.
To me, there are three groups from Muslims who happen to be responsible for not putting even a tough fight on this very crucial issue. One, the apex body of Muslims, the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) which came in to being in 1971 to legally protect and safeguard Muslims’ interest and ensure protection of Muslim Personal Laws within constitutional framework. It has been a responded party in the Supreme Court on Triple Talaq Case. The organization failed to mobilize mass supports which it got during signature campaign. It looks the organization is headless now. It is not that there are not able people within the organization but it is because that a division within upper hierarchy is clearly visible. They are not able to plan things well and when planned they are not able to execute them at ground level at right time with right strategy.
The second one is the premier Muslim organization Jamiat Ulama-e Hind (JUH). Jamiat has also been a responded party in the Supreme Court in the Triple Talaq Case. Jamiat is a better organized nationalistic body with mass appeal and a pan India membership. It appears that the Jamiat could not figure out how things were turning following the Supreme Court verdict in the Triple Talaq Case. Thus it virtually did nothing or very little to stop this Bill in Lok Sabha or help put a strong opposition against it by using its resources within political parties.
Both the AIMPLB and the Jamiat could not directly talk to non-BJP parliamentarians before the bill was presented in the Lower House, which this humble writer has suggested at least two weeks ago. Instead leaders of both the organizations were out of Delhi when a very serious Bill was being debated and passed in Delhi. AIMPLB called its meeting in Lucknow instead of Delhi to discuss about Triple Talaq Bill and resolved to shoot an open letter to Prime Minister Modi asking him not to present the Bill in the Parliament, as if Government was waiting to hear from them to make an important move. On the other hand, I have no information about any fractions of Jamiat even holding a serious meeting among themselves, let alone with others, to discuss and plan anything about this bill in last 10-15 days.
The Muslim law makers both in Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha are also equally responsible for this debacle as the third group. Politicians are supposed to be the visionaries of the nation. They knew the Bill was coming; they had excess to the draft bill before hand. They could read it, plan among themselves and suggest their respective public bodies to put pressure on other politicians. Some of them are respectable members both in AIMPLB and Jamiat. But they found to be unprepared or very poorly prepared. Badly divided among parties or with personal political interests at a time when they must have stood as a single Muslim body.
Mr. Assaduddin Owaisi, Hyderabad MP, came out as a lone hero following the debate on 28th December. He is defeated, he was taunted in the Parliament by his rival MPs from BJP but he stood alone bravely and fought alone like a lion of religion – the meaning of his name Assaduddin. The Sher (Lion) of Hyderabad has done his part and today every single Muslim man and woman is rightly praising him. Either one politically likes him or not but this credit cannot be taken away from him.
However, let’s be realistic. All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) MP from Karimganj (Assam) Mr Radhesham Biswas, Indian Union Muslim League MP from Ponnani (Kerala) Mr. E. T. Mohammad Basheer and AIADMK MP from Ramanathapuram (Tamil Nadu) Mr A Anwar Raja have also strongly opposed this Bill up to their highest strengths. They were though not best speakers in Hindustani language thus spoke either in English or in Tamil yet their first sentences were, ‘I stand here to strongly oppose this bill’.
This Lok Sabha consists two sons of Darul Uloom Deoband too, who are also members of its supreme and governing body – Majlis-e Shura. We Muslims Indians missed their voices on 28th December in the House when an utterly irrational and a completely against Qur’anic principles piece of law was being enacted in the Indian Parliament. They may have their explanations or justifications. AIUDF President Maulana Badruddin Ajmal, Dhubri MP from Assam, have put his reason stating Assam’s tense communal conditions owing to NRC draft publication on 31 December 2017 which demanded him to stay with the people of Assam and monitor situations sitting there. We are yet to get an explanation from Maulana Asrarul Haq Qasmi, the Congress MP from Kishanganj, Bihar. People may agree with their explanations or not but hearing them before passing a judgment is a must.
It is time; Muslim Indians need to have some reality checks. It is yet never too late to fix things and make orders within house. AIMPLB and Jamiat are our strong and mass based organizations. This time they might have not performed well due to various internal and external reasons but earlier they did perform extremely well. We cannot undo their dedicated and extraordinary volunteerism for the betterment of this nation and Muslims just because of one or two failures. They need to take these failures as lessons and bounce back for the upcoming battles. Maulana Ajmal and Maulana Qasmi’s contributions to the society and the nation also cannot be undone just because of their one day absence from the House.
Similarly Mr. Assaduddin Owaisi is credited today but ‘secular’ Congress has smartly backstabbed Muslims in the Parliament. For, it’s MPs like Sushmita Dev, MP from Silchar (Assam) spoke so well against the Bill but didn’t dare to demand for a floor test in the House, thus as per parliamentary system it favoured the Bill. Yet Indian Muslim politics cannot go with Mr Owaisi alone. Secularism has to revive and secular forces like Congress, TMC, RJD, Left, BSP, SP, AIUDF, AGP, BJD, YSR, TDP, DMK, AIADMK, NCP, JDU, RLJP, RLDP, et all are the future of Indian politics. Muslims will have to stand with them strategically to protect India from gallows of disastrous communalism.
All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) and Jamiat Ulama-e Hind (JUH) need to sit together sooner than later and draft genuine short term and long term plans. They also need to discuss their concerns with political forces from all parties including BJP. Dialogues are the best ways in a democratic system. It is notable that politicians will visit your doors only at the time of elections, now you need to step out and knock their doors.
Indian Muslims are sorry that they are losing grounds one after another but they are very sad that their leadership is not able to make a genuine fight. A challenge to those who are about to destroy India’s unity, integrity and its communal harmony is a must. Fight for the right cause, even if you are defeated, history will count you like a hero else be buried like a coward. Choice is yours.
The author M. Burhanuddin Qasmi is Editor of Eastern Crescent magazine from Mumbai. Views are personal.
By Shaykh-ul-Hadīth, Hadrat Mawlānā Muhammad Saleem Dhorat hafizahullāh
Once, I was reading an article wherein the author had stated that from among all the favours of Allāh ta‘ālā, for every one of them there can possibly be something that may substitute it, to some extent if not fully, apart from the favour of time, for once passed, no amount of effort can bring it back neither can anything substitute it. Take the example of the favour of sight. When lost, its restoration is not totally inconceivable. Even in the state of blindness, perception, to some extent, is possible with the help of other physical senses.
So a bounty whose value excels that of others in every respect deserves to be expended carefully and in worthwhile activities. Yet we witness that carelessness shown by people in the bounty of time is more than in any other favour of Allāhta‘ālā.
Every moment that passes by takes away a portion of our lives. The more we grow in age the less becomes our expectancy of living further in this world. Time is the only possession of this life, which decreases constantly and with precise regularity, yet in a very unnoticeable manner.
An Urdu poet has stated that the passing of time in every man’s life is as quiet and (yet) as certain as the melting of ice.
So it is of extreme importance that we utilise our time in fruitful and rewarding pursuits and not waste it away as we usually tend to do. Let us learn to value time in the forthcoming holidays, and then, if Allāh ta‘ālā wills, we will gradually become accustomed to it and maintain the attitude throughout the year.
The easiest method of preventing yourself from wasting time as well as gaining most from it is to prepare a timetable for yourself. This is not dissimilar to making a budget in the domain of economics. If one wishes to increase in one’s savings one will have to make a budget, thereby defining the limits of expenditure. On the contrary, if a person walks around with his entire income in his pocket, without any allocation of money, and continues to spend as the need arises, far from saving up any further, he will end up resorting to and depleting the original savings. So as we manage our finances for economical reasons so should we manage our time and maintain the same economical attitude here too.
Now as far as wasting time is concerned, there isn’t obviously a single way to do that. People will naturally waste time according to their respective inclinations or dispositions. Some may resort to completely meaningless activities and others may prefer to just sit idle and laze around. Moreover, some may become victims of overindulgence or fall a prey to perpetual self-satisfaction. Whichever the case, what is important to remember here is that the worst form of wasting time is to indulge in sinning and displeasing Allāh ta‘ālā. The displeasure of Allāh ta‘ālā is caused by the mere wasting of time too, but sinning will call for His extreme anger and invite His wrath. This is another point, which we need to earnestly reflect upon. For some temporary enjoyment we readily sacrifice our eternal abode of pleasure. For some trivial materialistic pleasure we are prepared to displease our Creator, the One Who has provided us with a vast array of bounties and different forms of lawful satisfaction of desires. Indeed He is the One Who has given us this very strength and capability which we are using to commit sins. How can we possibly displease Him?
My brothers, in reality, there is hardly any sacrifice in refraining from sins. Many of us feel that it is extremely difficult or almost impossible to abstain from sins. This is nothing but an illusion from Shaytān. Even the little discomfort we may experience in restraining ourselves from fulfilling unlawful desires is caused by Shaytān. We should make a habit of keeping ourselves aloof from all sinful areas. It would be difficult to control and subdue the desires once having slipped. For instance, one should always keep one’s gaze down when walking the streets, as it would be difficult to avert the gaze once it falls on the opposite gender. According to a Hadīth, the gaze is a poisonous arrow from among the arrows of Shaytān. One who safeguards his eyes only due to the fear of Allāh, (far from being painful) he will find the sweetness of Īmān in his heart. (At-Targhīb)
To conclude, I would like to emphasise that in the coming holidays, and afterwards, we should manage our time and desist from wasting it, and in particular, refrain from committing sins and thereby displeasing Allāh ta‘ālā.
(Extracted from ‘Time - A Valuable Asset’ published by the Islāmic Da‘wah Academy)
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Written by Mohammad Najeeb Qasmi, Riyadh
Translated in English by Nehal Anwar Qasmi, Najran
Sheikh Muhammad Mustafa was born in Mau, Uttar Pradesh, India around 1930A.D (1350A.H). He graduated from a well-known Islamic seminary of the Indian subcontinent Darul Uloom Deoband in 1952A.D (1372A.H). Afterwards, he moved to Egypt and got the “Certificate of Alimiyat with permission to teach" from Al- Azhar University in 1955A.D. The same year, he went to Qatar where he taught Arabic to non-Arab students and later became a librarian in the National Public Library there. As he had deep interest in the science of Hadeeth serving in the library helped him to work on various manuscripts of Hadeeth.
In 1964A.D, Sheikh joined Cambridge University, UK for PhD under the guidance of A.J. Arberry and Prof. R.B. Serjeant. His topic was "Studies in the Early Hadeeth Literature". After completing doctorate he returned to Qatar and served as the director of the National Public Library for two years there.
In 1968, Sheikh was appointed as Associate Professor at Ummul-Qura University, Makkah. In 1973 he joined King Saud University as Professor of Hadeeth sciences. He remained there until his retirement in 1991. From 1968 upto his retirement, Sheikh oversaw many research works on different subjects of Hadeeth which were carried out by the students of both Ummul-Qura and King Saud Universities. He also served as member of various educational and research institutions across the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Other honorary posts:
Beside being Associate Professor at Ummul-Qura University and Professor of Hadeeth sciences at King Saud University, Sheikh has also held other honorary posts in Saudi Arabia and abroad as follows:
1. Chairman of the Dep. of Islamic Studies, College of Education King Saud University.
2. Visiting Scholar at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan (1981-82).
3. Visiting Fellow of St. Cross College, Oxford, England (1987).
4. Visiting Scholar at the University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado, USA (1989-91).
5. King Faisal Visiting Professor of Islamic Studies at Princeton University, New Jersey (1992).
6. Member of Committee for Promotion, University of Malaysia.
7. Honorary Professor, Dept. of Islamic Studies, University of Wales, England.
In 1980, Sheikh received the prestigious King Faisal Award for his following works on Hadeeth:
1. Diraasaat fil-Hadeeth Nabawi wa Tarikh-e-Tadweenihi (دراسات في الحديث النبوي وتاريخ تدوينه): Arabic translation of his doctoral thesis. In this book Sheikh has answered all the questions generally raised by the Orientalists to challenge the traditions of the Prophet (PBUH).
2. Saheeh ibn-e-Khuzaymah (صحيح ابن خزيمة): This book has been compiled by Ibn-e- Khuzaymah (RA). It consists of the authentic Ahadeeth which were included by the authors of both Saheeh Al Bukhari and Muslim. Sheikh edited this book and got it published in four volumes.
3. Computerization of the text of Ahadeeth: One of the Sheikh’s important achievements is that he is the first who computerized the Arabic texts of the books of Ahadeeth.
Scholars of the Indian subcontinent have the privilege to contribute to the science of Hadeeth in all possible ways. That includes teaching Ahadeeth, writing commentaries and books to defend their authenticity and transforming them into computerized books.
By editing books of Ahadeeth and answering the objections of the Orientalists regarding the compilation of the Holy Qur’an and Hadeeth, Dr Muhammad Mustafa Azmi has served Islam at such a high level that even non-Muslim scholars of the world acknowledge his deep knowledge and insight into the science of Hadeeth.
Although Sheikh Azmi has lived in Saudi Arabia with his family for decades, yet he has not forgotten his mother land. He still keeps visiting India as his health permits and contributes in all the possible ways for the betterment of the people of his area. Sheikh has a daughter named Fatima Mustafa Azmi. She has completed M.Com and PhD from America and now she is an Associate Professor at Sheikh Zaid University. He also has two sons Aqeel Mustafa Azmi and Anas Mustafa Azmi. The elder one Dr. Aqeel has completed Master's degree in Engineering and PhD from America and now he is an Associate Professor at King Saud University while the youngest son Dr. Anas holds a Ph.D from the UK and works in the King Faisal Specialist Hospital.
Brief introduction of Sheikh’s academic services:
1. Studies in early Hadeeth literature: It is the doctoral thesis of Sheikh Muhammad Mustafa in English language and is included in the syllabus of various universities in the eastern and western countries. The first edition of this book was published in Beirut in 1968 and the second and third in America in 1978 and 1988 and still continues to be published. It was translated into Turkish and Indonesian languages in 1993 and 1994 respectively.
2. دراسات في الحديث النبوي وتاريخ تدوينه : It is the Arabic translation of his thesis and consists of 712 pages. Both books deal with the history of compilation of Hadeeth and assert that the process of compilation of Hadeeth began in the life of the Prophet PBUH not in the second or third century of Hijri as many people allege.
3. منهج النقد عند المحدثين نشأته وتاريخه : As name suggests in this book Sheikh deals with the methodology of Scholars to measure Hadeeth’s authenticity and non-authenticity. It proves that the criteria which scholars of Hadeeth set to authenticate the collection of Ahadeeth is of such a high level that has no example even in the present world to validate any thing. This book is in Arabic language and is included in the syllabus of Islamic University, Al-Medina Al-Munawwarah. Its first, second and third editions were published respectively in 1975, 1982 and 1983 in Riyadh and is still being published by different publishing houses.
4. Studies in Hadeeth methodology and literature: This book deals with the method and literature of Hadeeth that helps comprehend the Ahadeeth properly. It also replies to all the questions of Orientalists regarding authenticity of Ahadeeth. Sheikh has divided the book into two volumes. First volume discusses the methodology whereas, the second one concentrates on Ahadeeth from literary perspective. This book also is a part of syllabus in many universities and has gone into several editions.
5. The history of the Qur’anic text from revelation to compilation: This book is one of the significant works of Sheikh Muhammad Mustafa in which he describes the history of compilation of the Qur’an and highlights its authenticity over other divine books after making detailed comparison between their methods of compilation. He also gives elaborate account of the way Hazrat Zaid bin Thabit (RA) adopted to give final shape to the Holy Qur’an. Unfortunately this book has not yet been translated into Arabic or Urdu due to declining health of Sheikh. But during my meeting on 8th February, 2013 he expressed his desire that somebody should come ahead to translate it.
6. On Schacht’s Origins of Muhammadan Jurisprudence: This book presents detailed analysis and critique of the book of the noted Orientalist Joseph Schacht and gives convincing answers to all the questions raised by the author regarding the Islamic Jurisprudence. This book also is a part of syllabus in various universities and has been translated into Turkish, Arabic and Urdu languages.
7. كتاب النبي : Historians in general count 40 to 45 companions of the Prophet (PBUH) who were assigned to write on behalf of the Prophet, but Sheik Azmi has recorded with historical evidences in this book over 60 companions who used to write for the Prophet. The first edition of this book was published in Damascus in 1974, in Beirut and Riyadh in 1978 and 1981. Now it has been translated into English and published.
8. المحدثون من اليمامة إلى 250 هجري تقريبا : There are many books available about the scholars of Hadeeth from different cities of the world. But it is the only book dedicated to highlight the scholarly services of the scholars from the city of Yamamah.
9. موطا إمام مالك : It is one of the most reliable books of Hadeeth which was written by Imam Malik (RA). Sheikh edited it and published it in 8 volumes. He has also worked on the Ruwat (narrators of Hadeeth) .
10. صحيح ابن خزيمة : As mentioned above, it is one of the important books of Hadeeth by Ibn-e-Khuzaima which comprises the most authentic Ahadeeth after Saheeh Al-Bukhari and Muslim. This book has vanished for a long period, even some people believed that it no longer exists in the world. It was Sheikh Muhammad Mustafa who first discovered the book and worked on it. Now it is available in 4 volumes. The first edition was published in Beirut in 1970, second and third in Riyadh and Beirut in 1982 and 1993 and still continues to be published.
11. العلل لعلي بن عبد الله المديني : A book on the Rijaal of Hadeeth has been edited by Sheikh Muhammad Mustafa.
12. سنن ابن ماجة : A book of Hadeeth which was edited and computerized first by Sheikh Muhammad Mustafa. The idea of computerizing the books of Hadeeth came to Sheikh’s mind when he was doing his PhD in Cambridge University. And he even worked on some of them there.
13. مغازي رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم لعروة بن زبير برواية أبي الأسود : Hazrat Urwah bin Zubair the renowned Tabi’ee was the first to write a book on the Prophet’s biography named Maghazi Rasoolullah. This book was published in Riyadh in 1981 after Sheikh’s critical review and analysis of the book. Maghazi Rasoolullah is also an obvious proof that the scholars of Islam started writing Prophet’s biography just after his death. Idarah Thaqafat Islamiah, Pakistan published Urdu translation of that book in 1987.
14. Manuscript of Saheeh Al-Bukhari : Sheikh Muhammad Mustafa has the honor of editing the manuscript of Saheeh Al-Bukhari with additional footnote by various scholars which was prepared in 725A.H and discovered from Istanbul in 1977A.D.
In short, Sheikh Muhammad Mustafa’s services toward Hadeeth are very profound. They surround almost every aspect of the science of Hadeeth. The most important of them is his work on Hadeeth literature and methodology, critical analysis of Schacht’s Origin of Muhammadan Jurisprudence, history of the Qura’nic text from revelation to compilation, scholarly reviews and editing of various collections of Ahadeeth that would have otherwise remained unknown to the world and computerization of Hadeeth texts. Most of his books are available online for free download. May Allah grant us success in benefitting from his works and enhance our knowledge of Hadeeth Science, Amen!
Jesus (Pease be upon him) is not the son of God,he is the chosen Messenger and Prophet of Allah.
(Not permissible to congratulate saying Merry Christmas)
Mohammad Najeeb Qasmi
The overall Code which is made by Allah, the Exalted, for the birth of mankind i.e. a man getting married to a woman and have intercourse with her, thereafter by Allah’s command, firmness of pregnancy and giving birth of a child. Under no circumstance, Allah Almighty has also created some humans by not following this Code. Allah Almighty created Adam in such a way in which He involved neither a man nor a woman. Since Eve was created from Adam's rib, so, somehow, a man was involved in her creation, but there was no involvement of a woman. Similarly, Allah, the Exalted, created Jesus without a father, only from the mother (Mary daughter of Imran) through His power, in the city of Bethlehem, Palestinian. As, Almighty Allah said in the Verse 59 of Surah A’al Imran (Indeed, the example of Jesus to Allah is like that of Adam. He created Him from dust; then He said to him, "Be," and he was.)
In the light of Quran and Hadith, all Muslims believe that Jesus Christ is the chosen Prophet and Messenger of Allah. In the holy Quran, almost at 25 places, the name of Jesus Christ is mentioned and he was not hanged/crucified, but he was lifted into the heavens and a person similar to him was hanged. As, Allah Almighty has stated in Surah An-Nisa Verses 157 & 158 (And (for) their saying, "Indeed, we have killed the Messiah, Jesus, the son of Mary, the messenger of Allah." And they did not kill him, nor did they crucify him; but (another) was made to resemble him to them). Furthermore, Allah, the Exalted, explicitly explained that Jesus Christ was not hanged/crucified, but he was lifted up. The full detail of this event is elaborated by the holy prophet PBUH and can be found in Ahadith. It is also mentioned in Hadiths that before the day of Resurrection, he will be descended from heavens to the white minaret in the east of Damascus. Then, all nook and corner of the world will be ruled by Muslims under his patronage.
No certain date of Jesus birth is found in any religious authoritative book, even in the book of Christians, it is not mentioned that he was born on 25th December. Without any evidence, they recognized 25th December as Jesus date of birth. Although, what is estimated from texts of the Quran, Hadiths and the Bible is that Jesus was born in the summer season. As per Bible (chapter 2 verse 8), when Jesus was born at the night, at that time the shepherd was grazing his sheep outside. In the last days of December, it is snowing heavily in Bethlehem that no one can dare to go out of his house. And Bible says that the shepherd was grazing his sheep outside. In the month of December, due to heavy snowing in Bethlehem (Palestine), it is impossible to graze sheep outside at night. The holy Quran (Surah Mariam Verse 25) says that immediately after the birth of Jesus, Allah, the Exalted, told Marry “And shake toward you the trunk of the palm tree; it will drop upon you ripe, fresh dates. So eat and drink and be contented.” The whole world knows that the dates become ripe in the summer season, not in winter. Besides, there are more evidence that denote that Jesus was born in the summer season.
Christians believe that Jesus is given birth by Allah Almighty (Allah forbid), i.e. Jesus is the son of Allah, the Exalted. This was strongly denounced by Allah, the Exalted, in Surah Mariam: “And they say, "The Most Merciful has taken (for Himself) a son." You have done an atrocious thing. The heavens almost rupture there from and the earth splits open and the mountains collapse in devastation. That they attribute to the Most Merciful a son. And it is not appropriate for the Most Merciful that He should take a son.” In Surah Ikhlas, Almighty Allah has explicitly said: Say, "He is Allah, (who is) One, Allah, the Eternal Refuge. He neither begets nor is born, nor is there to Him any equivalent”. Thus, in the light of very open instructions/teachings of Quran and Sunnah, all Muslims believe that Jesus is not the son of Allah, the Exalted, but he is a man and there is no compromise in this matter at all.
Christians celebrate Merry Christmas on 25th December with the belief that Allah Almighty has given birth of Jesus on 25th December (Allah forbid). We don’t want to interfere in their religion, but it is our religious obligation that we should not participate in those religious parties/celebrations are being convened on this occasion, and also do not congratulate anyone saying Merry Christmas. As this sentence is totally averse of Quran and Sunnah. Yes! In case, your neighbour or friend is a Christian and he congratulates you on this occasion, then you have to withdraw yourselves by saying other words such as (thanks, etc.) As, the base/belief on which the Merry Christmas celebrated, is quite contrary to Quranic teachings. You could be thoughtful about your neighbour or friend, but on the other hand, there is also the issue of God's wrath and His severe punishment. So, it would be said to them openly that our belief is that Jesus besides being a chosen messenger and prophet, he is not Allah’s son at all. So that, I’m sorry to participate in the celebrations convened on this occasion.
There is substantial difference of opinion among Christians and Muslims on their belief in Isa (Alaihis Salam)
1) Nasara (Christians) believe that Isa (Alaihis Salam) is son of Allah, the Almighty, while in the light of Quran and hadith the whole Muslim Ummah (Nation) believes that Allah has no son or daughter, as Allah, the Almighty has repeatedly clarified this in the holy Quran. In Surah Al-Ikhlas also this has been clearly asserted that Allah, the Almighty neither begets nor is He begotten. Allah, the Almighty had created Adam (Alaihis salam) without any role of a man and woman, and Eve (Alaihas salam) was created without any role of a woman merely by with Allah's command. Allah, the Almighty created Isa (Alaihis Salam) by a woman (Maryam –Alaihas Salam) without any role of a male. Christians do not believe in Adam and Eve (Alaiham Assalam) as son and daughter of Allah, despite the fact that Allah, the Almighty had created Adam (Alaihis Salam) without any role of man and woman and created Eve (Alaihas Salam) without any role of a woman, then how come that Isa (Alaihis Salam) who was created without a man (in similar circumstances), is believed to be Allah’s son? Our intellect also demands that it is not befitting to the Almighty Allah Who is the Creator, Lord and Sustainer of the whole universe that He begets nor is He begotten.
2) Christians believe that Isa (Alaihis Salam) shares Allah's right of being worthy of worship. Trinity is an integral part of Christianity, which means three in one or one in three. Christians believe that Allah is one but includes three entities in one; god father, god son, the holy ghost. The Christian till to date stick to this belief. As for Islam, there is no place of trinity in it. Hundreds of verses of the Holy Quran refute this belief. According to Islamic creed Allah is one and nothing is like unto Him neither in His self nor in His attributes. In Surah Maryam, Allah strongly refutes this belief saying it is such a terrible evil thing whereby the heavens are almost torn.
3) Christians believe that Jews had crucified Isa (Alaihis Salam). However, in the light of teachings of Quran and Hadith, the whole Muslim nation is unanimous that Isa (Alaihis Salam) was neither killed nor was he crucified, but rather he was ascended to heaven prior to his crucifixion and a person resembling him was crucified in his place. He will descend down on the earth prior to the doomsday. He will spend his life following the Shari’ah of Muhammad (PBUH) and will enforce the teachings of the Holy Quran and Hadith.
4) Christians believe that the last Messenger Muhammad (PBUH) who is from the descendants of Ismail (Alaihis salam) the second son of Ibrahim (Alaihis Salam) born in Makkah is not a Messenger of Allah, the Almighty and anyone who believes in Muhammad (PBUH) as a messenger of Allah exits from the fold of Christianity. On the other hand, in the religion of Islam besides believing in Muhammad (PBUH) as the last Messenger it is also necessary to believe in Ibrahim, Musa, Isa (Alaihim Assalam). Now, the reader can easily decide as to which religion subscribes to extremism.
Summary: To exchange greetings on the occasion of New Year is a practice of non-Muslims. However, the rituals and functions organized on this occasion are not motivated by a specific religion’s ideology and it has now become a social norm. Therefore, though it is not unlawful to exchange greeting on such occasion, however, the Holy Quran and Hadith are replete with teachings of not adopting the non-Muslims’ rituals. Therefore, we should avoid exchanging such greetings, because the leader of all prophets Muhammad (PBUH), his companions, mufassireen (Quran commentators), muhadditheen (scholars of Hadith) and other scholars of Islam, none of them has been reported to have exchanged greeting on the occasion of New Year even at the beginning of Hijri year. But to exchange greeting by saying “Merry Christmas” is a pure religious matter. The belief with which the people celebrate Christmas day saying “Merry Christmas” is absolutely contrary to Islamic teaching, for Christians believe that Isa (Alaihis Salam) was born on 25th December and fathered by Allah, the Almighty. In addition they also believe in trinity, i.e. they believe that Allah, the Almighty instead of being one entity is comprised of three entities; god father, god son and the holy ghost. This belief is very dangerous and contrary to Islamic teachings. It is a matter of great sorrow that some Muslims initiate greeting each other saying “Merry Christmas” which has no room in the religion of Islam. Therefore, Muslims should not exchange greeting on this occasion. Those Muslims residing in Western countries or studying with Christians or employed with Christians or doing business with Christians should not proactively greet them on this occasion. However, if they are greeted by Christians they should say other words of prayer to them. It is worth mentioning that not a single reliable religious book even the bible itself having thousands of copies, mentions that Isa (Alaihis Salam) was born on 25th December.
Justice Rajindar Sachar
The guilt of fiendish murder of Junaid can not be sidelined by Hindu Majority under the slogan of “Not in my Name”. In fact Hindu majority will continue to be held guilty so long such devilish acts continue. These acts are a shame on our constitution and this challenge has to be met frontally.
The recital in the preamble to the Constitution that India is a secular state means that no religious group (including Hindus) can claim any special dominant position or status in the country.
Secularism does not signify Anti-Religion. In India people fervently believe in their respective religions and overwhelming number of persons of all communities give equal respect to the religion of others. Secularism signifies giving equal dignity and respect to all religions. Of course it goes without saying that Indian State has no religion of its own, nor for that matter can any religion claim superiority over another religion as by resorting to false premise that any religion in the Country is indigenous while others are foreign. This is heresy not permitted by our constitution, which gives equal reverence to all the religions practiced by various communities of India.
As put expressed succinctly by Lord Acton as follows: “A state which is incompetent to satisfy different races condemns itself; a state which labours to neutralize, to absorb or to expel them is destitute of the chief basis of self-government”; we need only substitute minorities for races to in the above quotation to apply the test in India.
Supreme Court when it said; [Dr. Ismael Faruqui Vs. Union of India, 1994 (6) SCC 360]
“It is clear from the constitutional scheme that it guarantees equality in the matter of religion to all individuals and groups irrespective of their faith emphasizing that there is no religion of the State itself.”
Posing the question what is the purpose it referred with approval to the test laid down by Lord Scarman of House of Lords UK;
‘The purpose of the law must be not to extinguish the groups which make the society but to devise political, social and legal means of preventing them from falling apart and so destroying the plural society of which they are members.’
Thus inclusive development in India and for that matter in any country alone is the path to prosperity. It is an undeniable truth and needs to be irrevocably accepted by all in India, namely that minorities, Muslims and Christians are not outsiders. They are an integral part of India. Let me quote what Swami Vivekanand (who even worst of RSS idealouge will not deny that Swami Ji was one of the greatest spiritual personality of India) has to say of the intimate connection between the spirit of Islam and Hinduism thus, “He also told Hindus not to talk of the superiority of one religion over another. Even toleration of other faiths was not right; it smacked of blasphemy. He pointed out that his guru, Sri Ramakrishna Paramhansa, had accepted all religions as true. Swami Vivekanand in fact profusely praised Islam and in a letter to his friend Mohammed Sarfraz Hussain (10 th June 1898) without any hesitation wrote “therefore I am firmly persuaded that without the help of practical Islam, theories of vedantism, however fine and wonderful they may be are entirely valueless to the vast mass of mankind. For our own motherland a junction of the two great systems Hinduism and Islam – Vedanta brain and Islam body – is the only hope……. the future perfect India.”
There thus can be no real progress in India which does not include minorities, Muslims, Christians as equal stakeholders. It needs to be emphasized that development and growth in the country has to be all inclusive – the mode of development must necessarily take into account the needs and sensitivities of Minorities, Dalits, Tribals in India. This was reaffirmed and emphasized recently by the Socialist party (India) which is inspired and follows the philosophy and programme of Shri Jaya Prakash Narain and Dr. Ram Monohar Lohia, thus; “that they must be treated as a special trust and there is an urgent need to attend to their problems immediately.”
The report of U. N. Human Right council, Forum on Minority issued on December 14 th , 15 th , 2010 has mandated as follows;
“The Council emphasizes; “Consequently, the right of minorities to participate effectively in economic life must be fully taken into account by governments seeking to promote equality at every level. From implementing non – discrimination in employment and enforcing protection laws in the private sector to developing national economic development and international development assistance schemes.”
The basic task is to reconcile the pluralism which then exists in that State, and the need to respect the identity of the various groups, with the overall concerns of non-discrimination, equality, national security, territorial integrity, and political independence.
The Minorities especially the Muslims have been the ignored factor by all Central Governments. It is not understood why since Prime Ministers High Level committee Report was given in November 2006, and which had recommended the establishment of Equal Opportunity Commission as an instrument to prevent discrimination against Minorities in the private sector like housing, employment, (since courts can not interfere in discrimination in private sector) this recommendation has been inexcusably violated and also remained in cold storage.
Thus inclusive development in the country alone is the path to prosperity. It is an undeniable truth and needs to be irrevocably accepted by all in the country that minorities, Muslims and Christians are not outsiders. They are an integral part of India. There can be no real progress which does not include minorities, Muslims and Christians as equal stakeholders in the country. I can not put it better than what Sir Sayyed Ahmed Khan, one of the greatest leader of our country had to say over a century back. Gandhiji repeated it in 1921, and also in another prayer meeting at Rajghat on 24 th March 1947 thus; “In the words of Sir Sayyed Ahmed Khan……I would say that Hindus and Muslims are the two eyes of mother India just as the trouble in one eye affects the other too, similarly the whole of India suffer when either Hindu or Muslim suffer.”
This puts a sacred obligation on the majority to fight for justice to minorities like Junaid.
I can do no better than end with a quotation from the well-known Italian author Dante namely; “the hottest spot in hell is reserved for those who see injustice and do nothing.”