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Thursday, March 11, 2010

Mufti Azam backtracks on Fatwa against stone pelting

Jamiatul Mujahideen dares jurist Bashir-ud-din to make his point at a Manazara

Ahmed Ali Fayyaz

SRINAGAR, Mar 11: Separatist hardliner Syed Ali Shah Geelani today avoided to make any fresh comment on stone pelting of the Kashmiri youth on Police and security forces on the streets of Kashmir valley on the occasion of his returning to Srinagar from New Delhi after three months but radical militant outfit Jamiatul Mujahideen alleged that Kashmir’s Mufti Azam (chief jurist) Mufti Bashiruddin had issued his latest Fatwa against stone pelting after receiving money from the Indian Home Minister. Characteristic of him in the past, Mufti has immediately backtracked and claimed that he had not made any of the comments attributed to him.

Immediately after Mufti Azam Mohammad Bashiruddin’s statement, purportedly made before mediapersons in New Delhi yesterday, appeared in today’s newspapers, spokesman of the guerrilla outfit Jamiatul Mujahideen issued a hard-hitting statement against the Valley’s chief jurist. He charged Mufti with issuing his Fatwa against the stone pelting after receiving “cash” from the Indian Home Minister. The spokesman said in his reaction that a many Muftis had been issuing such “un-Islamic orders” in lieu of privileges and other mundane considerations from the governments all over the world.

The spokesman said that getting such Fatwas issued against movements and individuals, including great scholars like Alama Iqbal and Maulana Maudoodi, had been an old trait of the state. “Would you please reveal how much of money have you taken from the Indian Home Minister before issuing this Fatwa ?”, Jamiat’s spokesman Jameel Ahmed asked Mufti Azam. He added that Mufti’s assertion about the stone pelting youth---that they were taking payment for this act---was an unsubstantiated charge and he should prepare himself for receiving its punishment.

While firmly defending and justifying stone pelting, the Jamiat spokesman challenged Mufti Azam to make his point at a Manazara (open debate) which, he suggested, be also attended and monitored by other Islamic scholars and men of high attainment in Islamic jurisprudence. He said that Jamiat’s delegation would soon call on Mufti Azam and invite him formally for an open debate on stone pelting.

Separatist hardliner Syed Ali Shah Geelani had the ‘distinction’ of being the strongest votary of stone pelting by the Kashmiri youth in the last two years but he had withdrawn his support to such ‘mobocracy’ on the day of an infant getting killed in an anarchical incident in Baramulla last month. On his return to home after staying in New Delhi for three months, Geelani did not react to Mufti Azam’s statement that has stirred a hornet’s nest in the Valley’s radical and pseudo-intellectual camp.

Chairperson of Muslim Khawateen Markaz (a constituent of the Hurriyat faction headed by Geelani), Yasmeen Raja, too issued a hard-hitting statement and alleged that Mufti Azam had issued his Fatwa “only for the appeasement of Sonia Gandhi and Manmohan Singh”. She called the jurist “a Sarkari maulvi”.

In yet another statement issued from New Delhi, Mufti Azam backtracked and sought to make it clear that he had not made any statement on stone pelting as reported by media. He said that a detailed clarification would follow.


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