Islamic clerics fume at ‘Abdullah’s anti-burqa’ views

February 9th, 2010 - 5:47 pm ICT by IANS  

Lucknow, Feb 9 (IANS) Leading Islamic clerics have taken strong exception to union minister Farooq Abdullah’s reported views against Muslim women wearing the burqa.
Several maulanas in Lucknow and some well known scholars at the prominent Deoband school of Islamic thought have raised serious objections to former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Abdullah’s reported remark at Ajmer Monday that the burqa was largely responsible for backwardness among Muslim women.

Maulana Khalid Rasheed, Lucknow’s naib imam and head of the city’s oldest Islamic seminary Firangi Mahal, told IANS: “Abdullah has always been rated as a highly respected politician, but that does not give him the licence to make irresponsible statements on religion.

“He has no business to question what was clearly laid down in the holy Quran, even if he has certain personal views.”

Rasheed also strongly refuted Abdullah’s argument that burqa was the biggest hurdle to the growth of Muslim women.

Senior mufti of Deoband’s Darul-Uloom Waqf Ehsan Qasmi in a statement said: “Wearing of the burqa was laid down by Allah and no one has a right to question His will or make any comment on it.”

“The statement issued by Farooq Abdullah is condemnable; anyone familiar with the history of Islam would know the contribution and achievements of women that have been spelt out in the holy Quran,” the mufti said.

Maulana Fazlur Rehman of Lucknow’s famous Tile-Wali-Masjid said: “A true Muslim is one who has sublime faith in the edicts of the holy book; and anyone deviating from the prescribed path cannot be a true Muslim.”

He sought to ask Abdullah: “Does he mean to say that only uneducated Muslim women were burqa clad?”

Shaista Amber, the All India Muslim Women Personal Law Board chief who claims to be very progressive, has also advocated her views in favour of the burqa.

Likewise, leading Urdu poet Munawwar Rana who was widely hailed for his aggressive writings and forward looking views is also vehemently in favour of the burqa. “If Islam has prescribed it, then there cannot be two ways about it,” he said.

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