Category Archives: Current Events

Concept Of “Practicing Muslim” 100 years ago and during Present-Day

Concept of “practicing Muslim” 100 years ago:

➡ Studies ‘Ilm and is aware of the right beliefs and has a good amount of knowledge of several abwab of ‘Ilm.

➡ Salah in Jama’ah at the Mosque.

➡ Hours of Dhikr and Tilawah Daily

➡ Tahajjud at night

➡ Various Nawafil across Day & Night

➡ Wonderful Akhlaaq polished by company of Ahl Allah.

➡ Islamic values and mentality, rules interiorized in the Baatin as well as practiced on the Zaahir, and in all aspects (not only ‘ibadat, but also mu’amalat, mu’asharat, akhlaq, etc).

➡ You see him, you are reminded of Allah.

➡ His word means something, his promise is binding.

➡ Knows and personify the meaning of honor and manhood ( if a woman, of haya).

➡ Plural wives and Jariyat to keep his gaze at bay.

➡ Striving to implement Islam, Shari’ah and Sunnah at all levels.

➡ Holidays in some ribat.

Versus:

Concept of “practicing Muslim” 2017:

➡ Fulfills the basics of a minimally valid iman..

➡ Does his fardh salah (may be as qada’ in the evening).

➡ Shows up for ‘Id and Jumu’ah.

➡ Replies to salaam

➡ Has a Muslim Name..

➡ You see him, you guess “he might be a Muslim..”

➡ Plans to marry with nikah after college, university, graduation, job, house and car.

Holiday in some so-called “halaal honeymoon” with his wife whose pics he posts for everyone enjoy.

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October 27th: The Darkest Day Of Kashmiri History

Why Kashmiris around the world commemorate this day every year.

27th October 1947 is being the darkest day of the Kashmir history, on this unfaithful day when Indian Armed forces with the help of British conspirators landed their forces in the peaceful land of Kashmir. It was 2 pm when first British Imperial Royal Air-forces plane landed on the air strip of Srinagar and it is the day when the illegal occupation of Kashmir started by Indians, it was the same year that Israelis with the help of British disembarked on the shore of Palestine and we can say the 1947 marked as the year of starting of Dual Nakhba, it was to weaken the power of two Muslims nucleus of power of Ottomans empire in Middle East with the illegal occupation of Palestine and other in the heart of Mughal empire with the invasion of Kashmir.

Kashmir known to the world as a paradise on the earth, lies between India, China and Pakistan, size of 86,000 square kilometers, 6000 feet above the seas level, three times the size of Belgium, it is situated at most high altitude and now turned into a prison for 14 million Muslims, since 1947 over 100,000 Kashmiris had been killed in brutal way by Indian army in their attempt to suppress the Kashmiri demand for a Free and Fair referendum, which has been enshrined in UNSC resolution 47 of 1948 (S/726).

The biggest casualty of this catastrophe is the women and children of Kashmir, women have been used as weapon of war. There is no normalcy in Kashmiri peoples lives, there is no freedom of expression, speech, association and movement, even Muslim cannot walk to masjid in group of three, and if they do, they order to shoot to kill as prescribed in Indian ordained draconian laws in Kashmir. Alas, very little attention had been paid by Ummah to bring a peace in valley of Kashmir, as Kashmir is burning for last 70 years, as we glorify India and consume her goods and services. If it is haraam to buy Israeli products then it is haraam to watch Bollywood movies, as one more coca cola we buy and drink is one more bullet into the nozzle of Israelis soldiers, and one more subscription to ZEE Tv or Bollywood movies, one more Kashmiri will die.

To understand the 70 years old dispute of Kashmir one need to look at six most important aspect:

1. Background: Pre Indo-Pak Kashmir
2. Kashmir and Act of Indian independence.
3. Demystified instrument of accession
4. Nehru approached UN and UNSC resolution
5. Status quo
6. Possible role thay can be played by International and Muslim world.

1. Background: Kashmir Pre Indo-Pak independence

When the British left India in 1947, British-controlled states, also called British India, were divided between India and Pakistan in a plebiscite along religious lines. Twelve million Hindus and Muslims fled from one area to another and half a million people lost their lives in the ensuing communal riots. Under the Indian Independence Act of 1947, the paramountcy of the British over about 600 princely states lapsed and these states were free to join India or Pakistan or become sovereign. The Indian National Congress had demanded that the two-nation theory [one for Hindus and another for Muslims] be applied to these princely states as well. In 1947, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan, and his Muslim League party, however, said that the princely states were sovereign for every purpose. In order to accommodate Jinnah’s point of view, the British enacted article 7(b) of the Indian Independence Act of 1947. (The Indian Act of Independence 1935, clearly state that if a princely state have majority Hindu population, it will automatically be  formed of Hindustan and Muslim majority areas to be formed Pakistan, the sovereign state of Kashmir had a 90% Muslim majority and it should have been awarded to Pakistan).

For some unknown reason head of boundary commission Sir Radcliff left the Kashmir as un-awarded and awarded Ferozpura which was Muslim majority area to India, and this state in North-west Punjab provide India with a vital road link to Kashmir.

Within a few months after independence, Sardar Patel, the Indian home minister, integrated 561 princely states, covering 800,000 square kilometers and containing a population of 86 million, into India. For this reason Patel is often compared with Otto von Bismarck, who unified Germany in the late 19th century. His work was much harder than that of Bismarck, who used “blood and iron” to integrate 39 states, whereas Patel integrated 561 without shedding blood or going to war.

Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) was one of these princely states. Had it been part of British India, it would have gone to Pakistan, since Muslims constituted about 90 percent of the state’s population. After the lapse of the paramountcy in August 1947, the Maharaja of J&K, Hari Singh, was uninterested in joining either country. He enter into a standstill agreement with India and Pakistan, but Nehru with the help of British imperial Air-force landed Indian forces into the valleys of Srinagar on the 27th October 1947, under the false pretext of that Maharaja Hari Singh had signed an instrument of accession to cede Kashmir to India. This so called Instrument of accession is still to be provided by India into international court of justice, but this document does not exist. Indian landed their armed forces illegally to occupied Kashmir against the will of Kashmiri people.

This illegal act of invasion of Kashmir state by India prelude to the breakout of civil unrest and end up in civil war. Nehru underestimated the situation on ground and took the matter to UN to legitimized their illegal landing of armed forces. UNSC listen to the complaint laid by Nehru and representation by Pakistan in its defense, subsequently passed the resolution, UNSC Resolution 47 of 1948 (S/726) which compelled Indian to hold free and fair plebiscites for three months. Indian PM Nehru accepted the resolution, but since then it has been denied to afford an opportunity for a referendum to facilitate Kashmiri rights of practicing “Right of Self Determination”.

Extract of UNSC Res 47 of 1948 S/726 Para B stipulation 6 to 9

Plebiscite

6. The Government of India should undertake to ensure that the Government of the State invite the major political groups to designate responsible representatives to share equitably and fully in the conduct of the administration at the ministerial level while the plebiscite is being prepared and carried out.

7. The Government of India should undertake that there will be established in Jammu and Kashmir a Plebiscite Administration to hold a plebiscite as soon as possible on the question of the accession of the State to India or Pakistan.

8. The Government of India should undertake that there will be delegated by the State to the Plebiscite Administration such powers as the latter considers necessary for holding a fair and impartial plebiscite including, for that purpose only, the direction and supervision of the State forces and police.

9. The Government of India should, at the request of the Plebiscite Administration, make available from the Indian forces such assistance as the Plebiscite Administration may require for the performance of its functions.
The resolution was approved by nine votes against none. The Soviet Union and Ukraine abstained”.

Currently, India, Pakistan, and China control 45 percent, 35 percent and 20 percent, respectively, of the original J&K territory. China received about 35,000 square kilometers in Aksai Chin in the 1962 war with India as spoil of war. Indian Kashmir has three regions: Kashmir Valley, Jammu, and Ladakh. The Indian-controlled Kashmir Valley (IKV), Jammu, and Ladakh have Muslim, Hindu, and Buddhist majorities respectively. Pakistan-Administered Kashmir (PAK) has a Muslim majority.

India and Pakistan have fought three wars — in 1947-48, 1965, and 1971 — and two out of these were over Kashmir. In addition to this, India has been fighting a covert war in Kashmir since 1989. The two countries came close to a full-scale war in 1999 when some freedom-fighters occupied the peaks in Kashmir overlooking the important Indian highway linking Srinagar to Leh, the capital of Ladakh. It is known as Kargil war, and a full scale war was averted at 11th hour by the direct intervention by Clinton administration.

The Status Quo:

Since the 1947, Kashmir has  remained in the state of emergency and in perpetual curfew. There is no freedom of movement, association, speech and self-expression. In recent years all internet connection have been banned and total communication is tapped.

There is no normal life, even going to masjid in group of 3 will attract the rule of law “ Shot to kill” as prescribed by POTA act Prevention of Terrorist Act.
Kashmir remain the highly militarized zone in the world with 750,000 Indian army and 200,000 BSF Border security forces. It has been witnessed and reported that at every 50 metres, there is an Indian soldier stationed to monitor the movement of Kashmiri people.

Women had become the weapon of War and the biggest casualty of the this tragedy are children and vulnerable women of Kashmir.

In 2005, there had been a discovered of 5000 unmarked mass graves site and international inquiry had been curtailed to blocked the investigation.

Statistical Human Right Violation in Kashmir:
Politically motivated murder over 100,000
Forceful abduction and arbitrary arrests: 17,000
Political prison without legal representation in jails: 32,013
Arson attacks: 7,890
Fake encounters: 2790
Women rape and molested: 21,345
Widows: 19,459
Orphans: 27,089
Violence against women and girls:

Reported crimes against women and girls continued to rise. According to statistics released in August, over 327,000 crimes against women were registered in 2015. Women from marginalized communities continued to face systemic discrimination, making it harder for them to report sexual or other forms of violence.
Source: Amnesty international :https://www.amnesty.org/en/countries/asia-and-the-pacific/india/report-india/

Extrajudicial executions

In April, a former Manipur state policeman told journalists that he had been involved in more than 100 extrajudicial executions in the state between 2002 and 2009. In July, the Supreme Court, hearing a case related to over 1,500 extrajudicial executions in Manipur, ruled that armed forces personnel should not enjoy “blanket immunity” from trials in civilian courts, and that the allegations needed to be looked into.

Sources Amnesty international: https://www.amnesty.org/en/countries/asia-and-the-pacific/india/report-india/
Rape as weapon of War report by Human Right Watch:
https://www.hrw.org/sites/default/files/reports/INDIA935.PDF
Documentation of human right violation in Kashmir :http://www.countercurrents.org/vltchek080215.htm

What can we Do to assist the Plight of Muslims of Kashmir:

What international community and Muslim ummah should demand to UN and India and also to South Africa government.

First and foremost as Muslim we must turn to Allah and pray to Him to ease the prevailing suffering on Kashmiri brothers and sisters and ask for His mercy to melt the heart of Muslim ruler and influential leaders in our community to pay attention towards the ongoing violence in Kashmir and use whatever leverage we have whether it may be economic saction, social, political and moral boycott of India in order for them to stop their state-sponsored terrorism in Kashmir.

Furthermore we must demand the following:

We demand that the United Nation take immediate responsibility and permit the independent Human Rights bodies to do a fact–finding mission into IoK Indian Occupied Kashmir and more specifically the affected areas to investigate the allegations of mass rape, genocide, war crimes, mass graves, arbitrary arrest, forcefully abductions, fake encounters and all other civil and social crimes against Muslims of Kashmir.

These atrocities are being systemically orchestrated against the Muslim of Kashmir people since 1947 and prior thereto to suppress their just struggle to determine their fate.

We demand that the continuing ethnic cleansing and genocide of the Muslims of Kashmir including war crimes and crimes against humanity cease immediately and withdrawal of 750,000 Indian armed forces

We demand that the perpetrators of ethnic cleansing and genocide must be immediately investigated, arrested and indicted for international war crimes and crimes against humanity.

We demand the immediate arrest and prosecution of Modi’s RSS ”Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh” right wing ultra-nationalist leaders who spread Islamophobic hate speech and incite violence which is causally linked to the ethnic cleansing and genocide of the Muslims of Kashmir.

The Indian Government must implement whatever measures are necessary for the immediate end to all hostilities and atrocities being perpetrated against the Kashmiri people. This must include the recommendations of the Advisory and investigative Commission on Indian Occupied Kashmir State, led by former UN Secretary General, Mr. Kofi Annan.

The Indian Government must implement measures for normalize daily lives in Kashmir, allow freedom of speech, freedom of association, access to all civil, social and political liberties. The Indian Government must allow the unhindered access of international humanitarian aid and relief into all affected areas since 1947.

The Indian Government must immediately allow the United Nations and SAHRC South African Human Right Commission, Human Rights Watch, Amnesty international groups as well as independent observers into affected areas with the purpose of protecting the people of Kashmir and documenting the perpetration of gross violation of human rights since 1947.

We demand proper and immediate medical care and unhindered access of medical personnel and supplies including international medical rescue and the Red Cross, Al-Imdaad international, Islamic Relief, Gift of the Giver foundation, Doctors Without Borders, Save the Children and similar organizations into all affected areas to provide the necessary urgent services required by the displaced and suffering people of Muslims of Indian occupied Kashmir.

We state that the process of rehabilitation from the effects of brutality, ethnic cleansing and genocide, psychological counseling is of paramount importance to ordinary civilians, women and children abused and devastated in conflict areas.

We demand that the Muslim of Kashmir be accorded their fundamental human rights and freedoms. The Myanmar Government including all its organs of state and military must adhere to and respect the fundamental human rights of the Kashmiris as guaranteed in the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Notwithstanding the aforesaid, measures must also be implemented for the immediate and unfettered investigation and prosecution of perpetrators under Rome statue and by International Criminal Court in Hague.

We state unequivocally that under her watch the Indian military under the leadership of Commander in Chief Narendra Modi supported by ultra-nationalist and extremist Hindus RSS and other right wing organizations have committed unconscionable deeds such as crimes against humanity, ethnic cleansing, genocide and political extermination.

The respect for international law, international humanitarian law and Geneva conventions must prevail under all circumstances where equality, human dignity, preservation of human life and human rights are paramount.

Most importantly there must be an immediate implementation plan towards the holding for free and fair plebiscites as promised by UN and enshrined in UNSC resolution 47 of 1948, so Kashmiris can practice their right of Self-determination.

The Kashmiris must be guaranteed freedom to practice their religion, the rights to freely associate, freedom of trade, freedom of movement, education, privacy and all other fundamental rights accorded with equality and human dignity.

Issued By:
Salman Khan.
SAKAG “ South Africa Kashmiri Action Group”.
Founder and Chairman SAKAG
082 691 6048
Salkhan1@yahoo.com

Government And Politics in Islam

By Maulana Manzoor Nu’mani (rahimahullah)

So much for Muslims living in their own independent countries, we will address ourselves to the problem of Muslims who belong to countries where they are in a minority, as in India and China. Since the conditions in these vary greatly from one to the other, a single code of conduct cannot possibly be evolved in the light of Islamic teachings for the political guidance of their Muslim citizens.  We can only enumerate the board principles that can be taken recourse to the circumstances permit or require. 

(1) A time was that when the truth of Musa (alayhis salaam) was revealed to the prestidigitators of Egypt and they bowed in obedience to the Divine faith and entered into its fold, the Fir’awn (pharaoh) felt so greatly outraged that he immediately pronounced a most brutal death on all of them. The tyrant did not spare even his wife the consequences of his wrath. 

In the same way, the pagans of Makkah practiced such ghastly atrocities on the poor, weak people who were the first to respond to the call of the Prophet ﷺ and embrace Islam that a recounting of them can even today make the eyes of the most stout-hearted among us well up with moisture. 

That age of savage cruelty and bestial oppression is now, should the situation in any country become, by any chance, so flagrantly unbearable for Muslims, it will be open to them to migrate to another land, even though it be a non-Muslim one, where they can live peacefully as Muslims, as their co-religionists had done by moving away to Abyssinia at the Prophet’s ﷺ advice, or, if it be not possible to tread the path of the martyrs and lay down their lives gallantly in the cause of Allah every drop of their blood will Insha Allah lend new life and vitality to the faith and be the cause of its resurgence in that very land and for those to whom this too should not be possible due to want of sufficient courage, there is the permission to concern their faith and continue to live in that country, hoping for a happier turn of events and making humble entreaties to Allah. 

“Our Lord; rescue us from this town, whose people are oppressors; and raise for us from these one who will protect, one who will help.” [Al-Qur’an: Nisa, 10]

(2)  To the best of our knowledge, a situation as grievously dismal as that does not obtain anywhere in the world today. There are, nevertheless, states which aspire not through the crude methods of old but through newer and more subtle ways to the Muslims away from Islam (or, rather, all God-abiding peoples from their spiritual moorings) without placing a legal ban on religion or God-worship. 

The Muslim citizens of these states should resolve to make undivided allegiance to Allah and the Holy faith and constancy of purpose and patient perseverance the spearheads of their policy and do whatever lies in their power to keep the spirit of Islam warm in their homes by imparting to them an aver-all atmosphere of religiousness. They should leave nothing undone on their part to arrange for the religious instruction and training of their rising generations. (It is our considered opinion that all this can be done if the right and the will to do it be there). Judicious and well-meant steps may also be taken. As far as they are possible, to make the powers that be realize the folly of their ways. These steps can be of a political as well as a non-political nature and they can produce results beyond all expectations. The might of the Lord is supreme: His ways are beyond our understanding, and it is an unchanging habit of His and a firm, definite promise that He will make His aid available to those of the faithful who will remain steadfast in his cause dating times of trial and suffering, and instead of giving way to despair, persevere in their efforts as they can in the circumstances. Situations will arise and factors will emerge, as if from nowhere, that will alter the course of things and remove the difficulties in their path.   

With most of the non-Muslim countries the position is that they are not antagonistic to Islam or harbor a fundamental prejudice against God or religion. Their Muslim inhabitants enjoy full freedom of religious belief and practice under the constitution along with the other communities. But since the ideological climate and the sociopolitical structure there are un-Islamic and wholly materialistic, some of their laws come into conflict with the tenets of Islam, or it becomes very difficult to fashion one’s life according to the teachings of Islam in their presence. In some of these countries, the population of Muslims runs into several crores. Take our own homeland, India, the Muslim population lies between four to five crores. These Muslims, naturally, have got to live in the countries of their birth. The question of migration does not at all arise for them as no Muslim country can afford to accommodate so many people within its frontiers. In these circumstances, it is absurd to suppose that they can live permanently in isolation from the governments of their lands nor does the Shariah require them to adopt such an impossible and unnatural course. At the same time, it is impossible for them to participate freely in the government and politics of their countries like any other community, telling themselves that religion had nothing to do with politics and that they could render to God the things that are God’s and to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and still remain good Muslims. That would entirely be opened to the purpose and meaning of Islam. It would mean that although God was the Lord and sovereign of the universe, government and politics did not fall within His Jurisdiction.

Such being the case, what the Muslims of these countries can and should do is to chalk out a positive program of action for themselves with reference to their particular needs and conditions. This program must, however, be inspired by a twofold conviction: firstly that they have to stay Muslims first and last, unflinching in their loyalty to the commands of God and the Prophet ﷺ as far as the circumstances allow and valuing that loyalty above everything else; and, secondly, that they have to confirm to the best standards of citizenship and render unstinted allegiance to their homelands. But it can be achieved only when the Muslims are absolutely clear and their minds on these two points and it is their collective decision.  To  produce the requisite collective consciousness, it may be necessary for them to launch an educative campaign among themselves so that once the decision is taken it may hold good for the entire community functioning as a unit. 

Another matter of crucial importance to the Muslim minorities in non-Muslim states is that, together with their co-religionists in all other parts of the world, it is a question of faith for them too to believe in Islam as the Ideal program of life, both individual and collective. As against it, all other programs are false and worthless. In consequence of this conviction, as from the humanitarian point of view also, It should be their sinceres desire to see that the other communities also adopted it as their own, and the Holy law, as revealed by  Allah in his infinite Mercy, reigned supreme all over the world. But, with all this, that cannot manage to ignore the realities of the situation as prevailing in their countries. They will have to determine their attitude after giving the most careful thought to all the aspects of the problem and with this dictum of the Shariah as their guiding principle: “Wherein lies most of good and least of evil.” In the light of this dictum they can also decide whatever to offer loyal support and co-operation to the governments of their lands in a particular situation or not. 

A living faith in God and a life wedded to the ideals of virtue and service to mankind are equally necessary for all Muslims irrespective of the lands to which they belong. The real reward for these high moral and spiritual qualities lies in the Hereafter, but for Muslims living in non-Muslim countries they are of the greatest advantage in this world as well. They are the safest, surest and the most universally effective means for the overcoming of their difficulties and for ensuring for them a place of honor in society. It is absolutely imperative for them to strive to their utmost to cultivate these qualities and to propagate them in the circle in which they move. If they can bring themselves to it, they will see that success beyond their fondest dreams will kiss their feet. Allah has held out a promise to this effect at various places in the Quran, as in this verse: 

“Those who believe and (constantly) guard against evil; for them are glad tidings in the present and in the Hereafter : No change can there be in the  Words of God. This is indeed the Supreme Felicity.” [Quran: Yunus, 7]

Muslims, who in the modern world, are feeling despondent and frustrated at their lot of being placed in the position of a weak minority in the countries of their birth have for them a special message of courage and hope in Surah Yusuf in the Quran. 

The story of Hazrat Yusuf (Alai-hiSalam) teaches us the moral that however weak be the numerical or political position of Muslims in a country they may even be in the minority of one and isolated completely from the rest of the people, religiously as well as racially, if they are true in their faith and righteous in their habits and are also ready to render whatever service they can to fellow citizens and to the State, they are bound to carve out a position of honor and trust for themselves and win the respect and admiration of its inhabitants for their religion. On being questioned by his brothers how a person whom they had pushed into the well could come to rise to such great heights, Hazrat Yusuf (Alaihi-Salam) offers this explanation:

“Behold, he that is righteous and patient, never will Allah suffer the reward to be lost, of those who do good.” [Quran:Yusuf, 10] 

So, this is the unfailing Law of Allah never to suffer the reward of one who believes and does good to be last and that we have said in the preceding paragraph was only an elucidation of this truth. It may not be very easily be convinced logically of its effectiveness in the political field, yet it should also not prove so very difficult, especially in the modern world of democracy and liberalism. But, alas, the spectacle that Muslims are presenting is that while they are eager to take recourse to all sorts of agitational methods for the solution of their political difficulties methods which are totally the product of the materialistic frame of mind and from which no good has ever accrued or can ever accrue, they are not prepared to give a trial to the remedy prescribed by the Qur’an. Indeed, it would seem that their state of mind today was identical to that of the unenlightened group among the Israelites of old as portrayed in the Qur’an in these words: 

“And if they see the way of the right conduct, they will not accept it as the  Way; but if they see the way of error, that is the Way they will adopted.”  [Quran: A’raf,17]

Muslim minorities in non-Muslim lands can also draw a most valuable lesson from the episode of Hudaibiyah in the life of the Holy Prophet ﷺ. The treaty of Hudaibiyah had apparently been contracted by the Prophet ﷺ on such weak and humiliating terms that it had become impossible even for a Companion of the unbounded devotion and loyalty of Hazrat ‘Umar (radhiyallahu anhu) to suppress his disappointment and resentment against it. But the point is, why had the Prophet ﷺ agreed to a humiliating arrangement like that? It was because the Prophet ﷺ had wanted channels of contact to be established between the Muslims and the people of Makkah who were then in the forefront of the campaign of war and hatred against Islam so that the Makkan polytheists could get an opportunity to observe the Muslims and their religion at close quarters and to ponder, in a peaceful atmosphere, over the all-important question of faith he had posed before them. History records that it was this very treaty, shameful and degrading as it looked at first sight, that paved the way for the Makkans to embrace Islam. It was as a consequence of it that outstanding leaders of the Quraish of the caliber Khalid bin  Waleed and Amr bin al-‘Aas (radhiyallahu anhum), entered into the fold of the Divine faith. The biographers of the Prophet ﷺ and the early historians of Islam are agreed that far more persons accepted the Faith of their own choice and violation within a few years of the singing of the Treaty than during the whole of the preceding 19 or 20 years of the ministry of the Prophet ﷺ. That is why, the Quran has spoken of it as a “Manifest Victory.”

“Verily, We have granted thee a manifest Victory.”   

The unique advantage to which the Prophet ﷺ had turned the seemingly hopeless treaty of Hudaibiyah is today within the reach of the Muslim populations of most of the non-Muslim countries. But the Muslims themselves are so utterly lacking in that life of faith, Islamic morality and devotion to mankind, and that unselfish religious enthusiasm and solicitude for the Hereafter without which they can have no complaint if they fell forlorn and abandoned. If they want to seek an answer to their ills and problems in Islam and the Quran, it is this: “Become Muslims: produce in yourselves the fire of conviction and adopt a life or faith and virtue and an earnest love for humanity and paths will be opened up for you that you cannot conceive of.”

Besides this fundamental principle, a passing reference may also be made to certain question of detail. As we have said before, it is essential for Muslim minorities everywhere to get it into their heads, clearly and once for all, that they have to live and die in the lands of their birth, and, at the same time, stay true to their faith. This is a matter about which a government, in spite of its being a non-Muslim one, can be most sensible and co-operative if it is just and liberal, but if it is otherwise, it can also put all sorts of impediments. Should it, therefore, be possible for Muslims to be helpful in bringing more enlightened and broadminded sections of the possibilities that may be open to them. In a democratic set-up, at the time of elections, for instance, there should be nothing to prevent them from offering support to a political party that may be expected to safeguard their religious and other interests more justly and fruitfully than the other contesting parties. They can also participate in the government if it is felt that they can serve their interests better that way. 

This is the verdict of common sense as well as that of the Shariah. In our support we can cite an instance from the conduct of the Holy Companions who had migrated to Abyssinia at the time of the Prophet ﷺ. During the period of the stay of the Companions in the country, Abyssinia was attacked by a foreign invader, and the Companions prayed more earnestly to Allah for the victory of the Negus.  Their leader, Zubair (radhiyallahu anhu), is also reported to have performed some highly meritorious service for the emperor on the battlefield. Explaining their conduct, one of the immigrant Companions, Umm Salama, has stated that it was because they felt that if the enemy won he would not treat them as generously as the Negus had been doing.  

Finally, Muslim personal law is a part of the religious structure of Islam and no non-Muslim government has the right to interfere with it. Muslims living under non-Muslim system are, as such, required to make every possible effort for the recognition of this principle by their governments. They may also take steps to set up, under the aegis of the Shariah, a separate arrangement of their own for the management of such problems of their individual and social concern as cannot otherwise be taken care of adequately in a non-Muslim State.

Before concluding, we would like to repeat that the Muslims falling in the category of a minority in a country should keep before them for their guidance the Story of Hazrat Yusuf (alayhis salaam) which has been narrated in the Quran in proper detail. There is not an iota of doubt that Muslims cannot fail to secure a position of honor and trust for themselves and their religion in any country they live in provided that they possess real faith, and lead a clean life illumined with God-consciousness and show proper discretion and prove their usefulness to their countrymen and the State. This is the way of God, and “No change can there be in the way of God.”

Islamic Voice Vol. 6, Issue. 2 Feb, 2011

ARSA: Who are the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army?

Source: http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/09/myanmar-arakan-rohingya-salvation-army-170912060700394.html

“Suu Kyi is lying, so are the army, there is no al-Qaeda in Rakhine.”

By Faisal Edroos

More than 300,000 Rohingya have been forced to flee their ancestral homeland in Myanmar’s western region of Rakhine amid a campaign of murder, torture, arson and mass rape by Myanmar  security forces and allied Buddhist mobs.

The latest mass exodus, which began on August 25, comes  after a small group of Rohingya men attacked around 30 police  and army posts in Rakhine State, killing 12 officers, according to the government.

Residents and witnesses have told Al Jazeera that the army retaliated with disproportionate force, burning down scores of Rohingya homes and villages as they tried to hunt down the attackers.

The Myanmar army has put the death toll at around 400, saying most of those killed were rebels. Residents, however, say it is more than 1,000 people. 

The group that carried out the attacks has insisted it is acting in the best interests of the Rohingya – but who are they and what do they want?

Who are the ARSA? 

The Arakan Rohingya Solidarity Army (ARSA), formerly known as Harakatul Yakeen, first emerged in October 2016 when it attacked three police outposts in the Maungdaw and Rathedaung townships, killing nine police officers.

Despite facing decades of oppression, the predominantly Muslim Rohingya had largely refrained from violence.

Rohingya living in Maungdaw township told Al Jazeera that the men, numbering only a few dozen, stormed the outposts with sticks and knives, and after killing the officers, they fled with light weaponry.

In an 18-minute video statement released last October, Ataullah Abu Amar Jununi, the group’s leader, defended the assault, blaming the Myanmar army for inciting the violence.

“For over 75 years there have been various crimes and atrocities committed against the Rohingya … that’s why we carried out the October 9, 2016, attack – to send a message that if the violence is not stopped, we have the right to defend ourselves,” he said.

Maung Zarni, a non-resident fellow at the European Centre for the Study of Extremism, told Al Jazeera that the group’s actions were borne out of “systematic abuses of genocidal proportions” by the Myanmar military.

“This is not a terrorist group aimed at striking at the heart of Myanmar society as the government claims it is,” Zarni said.

“They’re a group of hopeless men who decided to form some kind of self-defence group and protect their people who are living in conditions akin to a Nazi concentration camp,” he added.

“ARSA’s actions resemble Jewish inmates at Auschwitz who rose up against the Nazis in October 1944.”

What do they want?

ARSA says it is fighting on behalf of more than a million Rohingya, who have been denied the most basic rights, including citizenship.

“Our legitimate self-defence is a necessary struggle justified by the needs of human survival,” Jununi said in a video uploaded to social media on August 15, 2017.

“ARSA has been in Arakan for three years and has not brought any harm or destruction to the life and properties of the Rakhine people and Rohingya.”

The Myanmar authorities, however, paint a different picture, saying they are Muslim “terrorists” who want to impose Islamic rule.

Anagha Neelakantan, the Asia Programme Director at the International Crisis Group, told Al Jazeera that there was no clear ideology underpinning the group’s actions.

“From what we understand the group is fighting to protect the Rohingya and not anything else,” she said.

It’s unclear how many fighters the group currently has, Neelakantan explained, adding that there was “no evidence that ARSA has any links to local or international Jihadist groups, or that their aims are aligned”.

Why did they form?

For decades, the Rohingya have faced entrenched discrimination and other human rights violations by the country’s military governments.

In 1948, when the British left Myanmar, the military who succeeded them launched a campaign to create some sense of nationhood.

Despite them having deep historical and ancestral roots within the pre-colonial borders of Myanmar, the military would embark on several campaigns to ethnically cleanse the nation of the Rohingya.

Since 2012, incidents of religious intolerance and incitement have increased across the country, with the Rohingya and other Muslims frequently attacked and portrayed as a “threat to race and religion”.

Are they linked to al-Qaeda or ISIL?

Aziz Khan, a Rohingya living in Maungdaw township, told Al Jazeera that the military and civilian government were “scare-mongering” and there was “no evidence to suggest the group had any ties to any prescribed terrorist groups”.

“The media has latched onto the government’s statement that these men are ‘terrorists,’ this is a lie, [Aung San] Suu Kyi [Myanmar’s de facto leader] is lying, so are the army, there is no al-Qaeda in Rakhine.”

“These men are not well equipped. All they have are sticks, swords and guns they seized from military outposts. No bombs.”

In the August 15 video, Jununi said that the ARSA was “not affiliated with any elements of terror, nor does it receive funds from any other organisation”.

“While the group may be receiving funds from the Rohingya diaspora in Saudi Arabia, the group is not calling for an Islamic state nor are they separatists, rather it’s a call for peace and ethnic equality,” Zarni said.

BEWARE OF THE BOGUS ‘QUR’BAANI’ OPERATORS

[Majlisul Ulama]

The time of Qur’baani is a time of windfall for some unscrupulous BOGUS ‘qur’baani’ operators. These scoundrels net large sums of haraam boodle from stupid members of the community who entrust their Qur’baani  obligations to these villains solely on the basis of the expensive, glossy posters and pamphlets in which they proffer deceptive scenarios pertaining to their bogus ‘qur’baani’ rackets.

It is indeed the height of irresponsibility to entrust your Qur’baani obligation to someone merely on the basis of an advert. If you are not personally aware of the vendor nor is there independent confirmation from a responsible entity as to the bona fides of the persons appealing for Qur’baani orders, do not be so stupid as to entrust your money and obligation to the scoundrels.

Most people who entrust their Qur’baani money to strangers and to faceless collectors whose whereabouts are in some murky limbo, do so because of the cheap price quoted by these dishonest bogus characters. There is no transparency in their ‘qur’baani’ projects. They refuse to answer straightforward questions, and they are extremely averse to others joining them. 

They have too much rot to conceal, hence the secrecy underlying their bogus ‘qur’baani’ operations.

POLITICAL FREEDOM AND CULTURAL SERFDOM

By Maulana Abul Hasan Ali Nadvi (rahimahullah)

I am constrained to refer to the fact — a fact, both regrettable and unpalatable — that none of our eastern countries including India and Pakistan and even those Arab countries which have yet to achieve complete freedom from foreign domination, has as yet realised what it really means to be independent and free. They have not yet enjoyed the fruits of real freedom. From the day they became free they have yielded themselves to be bound by fetters of intellectual, cultural and economic bondage.

They have become so dependent on the West that the liberation of these countries has meant only a change in the personnel administering these countries without any change in the springhead supplying the vital impulse to run their administration. Liberation of these countries has not meant a whit more than this superficial changeover. We have been drawing upon the West not only in education but also imitating their system of education; we are following the West in our manners and modes of living; and what is more, we often depend for our moral and religious precepts too on the researches made by the Western scholars.

Even the Islamic sciences are judged from the standpoint evolved by the western educational institutions. Orientalists are held in high esteem not only in West but in the East also and it has been accepted on all hands that whatever they say is the last word requiring no further quest and scrutiny. This is the present state of affairs in every Islamic country with the result that none of them has had an opportunity to enjoy the benefits conferred by their political freedom. All of them are so overburdened with the western ideals and view of life that they are seething with discontent beneath the insufferable weight of alien crazy concepts.

Some of these countries are, fortunately, wholly populated by the Muslims but they have failed to pattern their policy on the demand of its faith and conscience. They are, in consequence, caught in the cobweb of mental discon­tent and vexation of spirit which is bound to result into a crisis of confidence and disintegrating conflict.  An unrelenting struggle in these countries is caused by those who wield the reins of Government in these countries, those who have pinned their faith in the western ideals and con­cepts. They are Muslims, no doubt, and they also come from respectable Muslim families. Nor have they forsaken Islam, but in their mental make up and intellectual outlook they have been cast in the mould of western way of looking at things.

It is their misfortune that the nations committed to their care are Muslims out and out; they have faith in God and His Apostle; they believe in the life after death where there is a heaven and hell and where they shall have to render account for whatever they do in this world; they acknowledge the fact that the, life of the world and its pleasures and sorrows are transitory; they are convinced that the ultimate end they have in view is preferable to the purely material objectives; they know that the aim of life is not to eat, drink and be merry and to have the fat of the land but it consists in being more humane, inculcating the awe of God, betaking the path of virtue and avoiding the ways of sin, leading a life pure and virtuous in the footsteps of the last Prophet of God, acting on the injunctions and precepts of the Law revealed by the Lord, serving the humanity and disseminating the message of peace and virtuous living to the wayward humanity in order to help it to chart its course out of the predicament of doom and despair it is finding itself enwrapped at present.

But those who have gained a hold over administration in these Countries have an entirely different view of life and the world. They harbour doubts about many a truth enunciated by Islam. They are skeptical if there is any Power behind what their senses reveal to them, a Power unseen and imperceptible behind the manifest, palpable beings and objects — or that there is a life after death. They find it hard to believe that man can derive satisfaction and happiness from any thing other than material assets and holdings. An unprecedented but unfruitful unrest has thus cropped up in our eastern countries which is wasting their energy for nothing. Only yesterday I told some of my Arab friends that if our eastern countries could get a leadership which was aware of the inherent qualities and strength, the indomitable courage and enthusiasm the spirit of zeal and sacrifice, the mood and temper and the glorious past and present potentialities of our people, it could again brace up their strength which no power on earth would be able to subdue.

Whatever vigour and energy the East possesses, it lies in the power of its Faith. It is the faith that moves mountains. For the people in the East, the faith still has the power to awaken the spirit to sacrifice their lives, their pleasures, their hearts and homes for it. Fighting for the honour of God, for Islam, for the Prophet and for the faith still stimulates that frenzied fervour in them which can neither be enkindled by a call for any other cause nor be subdued by anyone. But it is simply tragic that our people passing out of the portals of western universities have all their wits about them except that they remain completely oblivious’ of the latent strength and vigour of their own people.

If you do not mind my plain speaking, I would say that perhaps the Poet of the East had addressed  these every persons in this couplet:

Get within thy self and discover the life’s secret;

If thou does not want to be mine, true to thyself be at least.

All those who go back from the universities here know all about history and geography, individual and mass psychology, but if they remain blind to anything, it is the temperament and disposition of their own people — the people amongst whom they have to go back and live and work, the people who are their own limbs and hands. They do not know them, nor the reservoir of strength concealed in them which had once shaken up the world.

It is the power that can never be defeated even by the combined strength of all the nations of the world. And, our people in the East have that power of faith even today but either our leaders know not what it is or they are strangers to the parlance of faith. They perhaps only know the language which reaches the ears of their people but fails to touch their hearts. They cannot speak in the tongue that can enrapture and enravish their hearts — a language that touches the cords of one’s heart and casts a magic spell on the listener. This is the language of the faith and the Qur’an; the language spoken by the companions of the Prophet which made men die in the last ditch. How can a man speak to others unless he knows their language? How can I convey my thoughts to the people of this land unless I can speak in English?

This will lead to nothing but to the confusion of tongues. These leaders speak to their own people in the same parlance in which they converse with the West. They should have at least been alive to the fact that the people whom they seek to address are the followers of the Prophet of Islam, the language which they understand, which touches their heart and stirs their blood is the language of faith— the language that they speak in their homes and lanes, mosques and marts. It is the language of those transcendental realities which they have cherished for fourteen hundred years. Therefore, if you want to tug their heartstring you shall have to speak to them in that very language.

“Vande Mataram” and the Muslims

[By A. Faizur Rahman]

It becomes imperative to analyse the objections raised by the Muslim community against the recital of the Vande Mataram.

The controversy over the singing of Vande Mataram has once again threatened to divide the country on communal lines. The refusal of the Muslims to sing this song seems to have angered the Hindutva ideologues, who, without giving them an opportunity to explain their position, have accused them of being anti-national. Hence, it becomes imperative to analyse the objections raised by the Muslim community against the recital of the Vande Mataram.

Islam, being a monotheist religion, forbids the apotheosis of any deity, animate or inanimate, except God, the Supreme Creator. In fact, ascribing divinity or any attribute of divinity to even Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) is considered an act of blasphemy negating the very purpose of Islam, that is, to promote the concept of unity of mankind through the worship of a common Creator. 

In this context, those opposed to the Muslim point of view should know that, Bankim Chandra Chatterjee’s Vande Mataram contains verses which are in direct conflict with the beliefs of Islam. For instance, the fourth stanza of the song addresses motherland India as, “Thou art Durga, Lady and Queen, with her hands that strike and her swords of sheen, Thou art Lakshmi lotus-throned……..”

When a Muslim sings these words he is forced to equate his country with the Hindu goddesses Durga and Lakshmi, thereby deifying the physical land of India and beseeching it to “arise and save.” This militates against the concept of Tawheed (oneness of God) according to which a Muslim cannot supplicate to anyone except God. Therefore, just as one cannot force non-Muslims to recite the Qur’an in their gatherings, it would be most unfair to force the Muslims to violate their Scriptural injunctions by questioning their patriotism.

The religious predicament of the Muslims was understood in the right spirit decades ago by Jawaharlal Nehru. In October 1937, when the Congress Working Committee met in Calcutta under the Presidentship of Nehru, it adopted a resolution which said, “The Committee recognizes the validity of the objection raised by Muslim friends to certain parts of the song. While the Committee has taken note of such objection insofar as it has intrinsic value, the Committee wishes to point out that the modern evolution of the use of the song as part of National life is of infinitely greater importance than its setting in a historical novel before the national movement had taken shape. Taking all things into consideration, therefore, the Committee recommend that, wherever Bande Mataram is sung at national gatherings, only the first two stanzas should be sung, with perfect freedom to the organisers to sing any other song of an unobjectionable character, in addition to, or in the place of, the Bande Mataram song.” [Quoted by A.G. Noorani in the Frontline, Jan 2-15, 1999)].

Based on the above resolution, the Hindutva brigade wants the Muslims to sing the first two stanzas arguing that there is nothing wrong in bowing to the motherland. This is a deliberate attempt to mislead the minority community, because, many Hindus elevate “Bharat Mata” or Mother India, to the status of a goddess as clearly seen in the traditional depiction of India as a lady dressed in a saree holding a red flag. In fact, in 1936, a Bharat Mata temple was built in Benaras by Shiv Prashad Gupt and was inaugurated by none less than Mahatma Gandhi. Then in May 1983, Swami Satyamitranand Giri founded a Bharat Mata temple in Haridwar which has a statue of Bharat Mata holding a milk urn in one hand and sheaves of grains in the other. According to the temple guide book, “the temple serves to promote the devotional attitude towards Bharat Mata, something that historians and mythological story-teller may have missed.” (Mc Kean, Lise. “Bharat Mata: Mother India and Her Militant Matriots”, in Devi : Goddesses of India, edited by John S.Hawley and Donna M.Wulff, Motilal Banarasidass Publishers, Delhi, 1998). 

Moreover, not many know that Bharat Mata poojas are regularly performed all over India. The Hindu, on Jan 3, 2005 reported one such pooja by the BJP activists in a temple in Mahabubnagar, Andhra Pradesh, during which there was a clash between the BJP and CPI (M) workers. The Chandigarh Tribune reported on April 13, 2002 that the employees of the Govt. Medical College and Hospital in Chandigarh performed the pooja of Bharat Mata “as per the Indian culture.” Also, the largest Hindu website dedicated to the freedom movement, http://www.freeindia.org, has posted an ancient Sanskrit Hindu verse glorifying Mother India as a goddess. It reads, “Ratnakaradhautapadam Himalyakirtitinim (I) Brahmara-jarsiratnamdhyam vande Bharatamataram (II)”. When translated it means, “I pay my obeisance to mother Bharata, whose feet are being washed by the ocean, who wears the mighty Himalaya as her crown, and who is exuberantly adorned with the gems of traditions set by Brahmarsis and Rajarsis.”

The aforementioned facts prove deification of India by the Hindus, which means that the Muslims, by singing the first two stanzas of the Vande Mataram, would be violating the basic tenet of Islam, that is Tawheed. It cannot be argued that saluting the motherland is harmless because the fourth stanza clearly identifies the land of India mentioned in the first stanza with goddess Durga and Lakshmi, and therefore, any salutation to motherland tantamounts to bowing before Hindu goddesses – an act unthinkable for a Muslim. The Muslims respect the right of the Hindus to worship any deity, but they cannot be forced to commit un-Islamic acts.

Another reason for the Muslims’ reluctance to sing the Vande Mataram is the fact that the novel Anandamath by Bankimchandra Chatterjee, in which it was first published, glorified the ethnic cleansing of the Muslims. As an example the following passage may be quoted. “The rural people ran out to kill the Muslims while coming across them. In the night, some were organised in groups and going to the Muslim locality, they torched their houses and looted their everything. Many Muslims were killed; many of them shaved their beards, smeared their bodies with soil and started singing the name of Hari. When asked, they said, we were Hindus. The frightened Muslims rushed towards the town in group after group. (pages 161-162 of Abbey of Delight, the English translation of Anandamath, by Arabinda Das).

In any case, the Vande Mataram is a national song and not the national anthem of India, hence refusal to sing it cannot be construed as showing disrespect to the country. Given the fact that the Muslims have been singing the Jana Gana Mana ever since India attained independence, and the fact that they have laid down their lives for the country during and after the freedom struggle, their spirit cannot be doubted even for a minute. It must be understood that India being a secular democracy, every community has the right to profess and practice its faith so long as it does not challenge the unity and integrity of the nation, and therefore, the coercive imposition of the beliefs of one religion over another would only result in communal disharmony.

(The writer is a Peace Activist & Executive Committee Member, Harmony India) 

Courtesy: IslamicVoice