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15-31 May 2002

Muslim women collecting donations at Lucknow 
for Gujarat victims

Talaq implementation after Court ruling
Aurangabad: In an interference in Muslim Personal Law, the second of its kind after Shah Bano case, the Mumbai High Court in its extraordinary judgement has given its ruling that any of the case relating to Talaq provision coming under Muslim Personal Law's jurisdiction would be implemented only after the Court has pronounced its verdict. The latest ruling which has come from Aurangabad Bench of the Maharashtra High Court is being perceived to be controversial, and has generated a feeling of unrest amongst the Muslims.
The recent judgement on Talaq was pronounced on a writ filed by Latur-resident Rahim Bibi who had gone to the Court against her husband Daghdad Pathan. Earlier, a lower Court had pronounced verdict against the petitioner's husband which was later challenged in the Aurangabad Bench of Maharashtra High Court at Mumbai. Pathan had submitted before the High Court that he had earlier delivered a verbal Talaq to his estranged wife and that he felt the need to apply for the same under Muslim Women Protection Act. However, pronouncing the verdict, the three-judge Bench comprising Justice BH Marlapale, Justice NV Dabholkar and Justice NH Patil said that in matters of Talaq (divorce) either verbal or written, the learned Court has to be informed at all costs as per the prevailing practice. Delivering its judgement, the Court said that according to the provisions of the Muslim Personal Law, it has been stated that in comparison to his wife a Muslim husband's status is superior. However, this does not mean that he should throw out his wife from home in a fit of rage and that too without any valid reason. 

J&K leader demands disbanding of SOG
Srinagar: Expressing concern over the protection of the lives of common people in the state, Mehbooba Mufti, Vice-President, People’s Democratic Party, has demanded the immediate disbanding of the Special Operations Group (SOG) of the Jammu & Kashmir police. Besides, pro-government militants should also be disarmed, she said.
"Under the Farooq Abdullah government, there has been a sharp increase in human rights violations, and the situation has only further deteriorated", Mrs. Mufti said. Mrs. Mufti told that SOG should be disbanded and merged with the regular J&K police and be made accountable to it. Regarding pro-government militants, she said that they while working with the security forces had become a law "unto themselves" and let loose a reign of terror. They should also be disarmed and appropriately rehabilitated.

Seminar on "Roz-E Shaikh Saadi" organized
New Delhi: Islamic Republic of Iran, this year, celebrated 20 April as "Roz-e Shaikh Saadi" (Shaikh Saadi Day). On this occasion, Iran Culture House at New Delhi, also organized a seminar on Shaikh Saadi. Prominent Persian language literateurs, intellectuals and scholars graced the function and presented papers on the life and works of Shaikh Saadi Shirazi. 
Shaikh Saadi Shirazi, an acclaimed Persian poet, is also named Shaikh Muslihuddin Shirazi. His poetic works are still read and listened with equal passion in various countries of the world. 

Muslim temples’ saviour receives threat 
Midnapore (West Bengal): Yasin Pathan, who earned kudos for having saved more than 30 temples, and also playing as prominent role in defusing communal tension in the state, is now receiving threats from his own community. Pathan had been honoured with Kabir Samman in 1995 by the President of India for his daring efforts.
"I have been receiving threatening calls for the last few days threatening that I would be killed if I do not end my mission of protecting ancient temples", Pathan told M. V. Rao, District Magistrate, whom he met recently. Pathan proudly claims to have saved 24 temples from the ravages of the Kangsabati river. 

Modify Islamic Studies syllabus: scholars 
Aligarh: Dr Syed Sulaiman Nadwi, Professor of Islamic Studies at Durban in South Africa, speaking before a gathering of students and teachers at the Library Hall of Aligarh Muslim University, said that we are still under the influence of imperialist thoughts and ideology be it in the field of politics or education and research. Though, the religion of Islam or its followers – Muslims, have not been able to convince the western nations, but their attitude, thoughts and behaviour had undergone a sea change regarding us. It is pertinent that we mould and characterise ourselves in a way that the true message regarding us and our religion be put across in a proper and positive perspective. The qualities of humility, modesty and good brotherliness, which are attained through sound knowledge and education, would see us through in these trying times. Dr Nadwi also stressed on the need to put across our viewpoint in English since it is the language of international communication. This, we would not be able to do unless we have a sound and effective command over English. Simultaneously, we should try to learn Arabic language and have a grip over it since it is the language of the Holy Qur'an. It is only then we would be able to portray the tenets of the Holy Qur'an in its true perspective. 
Prof. Hakim Syed Maudood Ashraf, in his presidential address, called upon the gathering to employ intelligence and good strategy while dealing and tackling the disruptive, fascist forces who are out not only to destroy the Muslims but even devoid India of its historical past. It is the need of the hour that Muslims as an ummah should stand unitedly and face the present challenges boldly and with perseverance. 

Taj security now under CISF
Agra: Acting under Supreme Court directive, the security of Taj Mahal would now be looked after by the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) from 1 May. Earlier, the Uttar Pradesh police and a private security agency SIS were responsible for the security of one of the seven wonders of the world.
For quite some time, threats to blow up the Taj Mahal were coming from different Kashmiri terrorist organizations. Even, at one stage Bajrang Dal activists are reported to have vandalised the precincts of the Taj. A Supreme Court bench comprising Justice M. B. Shah and Justice H. K. Sema while giving the ruling said that the security of the famed monument be handed over to a paramilitary force since UP police was not capable enough and well-equipped to ward off an attack on the monument. Mohammed KK, Superintending Archaeologist, Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), Agra, disclosed that so far the UP police was in charge of security outside the monument and the SIS was in charge of the inner cordon. 

Gujarat riots: threat to approach UN
New Delhi: Muslim leaders have demanded a thorough probe into the Godhra incidents and the Gujarat riots. They said that an impartial and a complete investigation is necessary to unmask the real instigators behind the crimes, and apprehend and severely punish the culprits. Addressing a joint press conference Maulana Musanna Mian, president, Masjid Imam Council Mumbai, Maulana Yaseen Akhtar Misbahi, chairman, All India Mushawarat Board, Maulana Muhammad Idrees Bastawi, secretary, Babri Masjid Action Committee, and Maulana Syed Noori, General Secretary, Raza Academy, said that if Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi is not immediately dismissed and Godhra and Gujarat riots not thoroughly investigated, then they would be compelled to take the issue to the International Court of Justice, Amnesty International and Human Rights Commission of the United Nations Organization (UNO).
Condemning the Godhra incident as an un-Islamic act, they said if any Muslim is found involved in such inhuman and brutal act, then he is guilty according to Islamic Shariah and should be given the strictest of punishment. They alleged that Godhra incident was in fact the brain child of Union Home Minister Lal Krishna Advani and approved by Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee. Gujarat pogrom was carried out with the active assistance of the Israeli Intelligence agency Mossad, they said. 

Anti-riots units in the offing 
New Delhi: Riots have become a bothersome factor for the Delhi Police. Delhi has already been a witness to the anti-Sikh riots in 1984 on a big scale. So, what if similar anti-Muslim riots break out, as is happening in Gujarat and other parts of the country? Delhi Police is raising a special battalion, equipped and trained exclusively to tackle riots and similar violent law and order breakdowns. 
According to Delhi Police officials, two years of painstaking effort has gone into the bringing up of the first batch of two companies (200 personnel) of the riot control unit. An elaborate training programme was conducted, and the first police unit specifically sensitized. Maintaining neutrality and not falling prey to ‘religious sentiments’ while tackling a communal riot were some of the basics taught during the training programme. However, a number of state police have been accused of showing partiality during the communal riots.
Manoj Kumar Lall, DCP, 1st Battalion, said, "Each of the 200 trained members of the unit has been hand picked". Now riot gear has also been provided to the special unit personnel. The new riot gear includes American style 12-bore pump guns, translucent poly-carbonate shields, elbow and shin guards and protective clothing. New gray uniform has also been provided to the new anti-riot force. 

Ex-RSS ideologue on Gujarat riots
New Delhi: Veteran RSS ideologue and now a social worker, Nanaji Deshmukh, has accused political, social and religious leaders of failing in their duty of protecting the lives of the people and allowing the country to drift towards anarchy and an impending civil strife. Terming Gujarat violence as "barbaric", Mr Deshmukh said, "We, the people, have to stop acting at the behest such political, social and religious leaders who are out to rip apart the unity of the nation and examine for ourselves why we are allowing them to destroy us". Mr Deshmukh, who is now keeping himself aloof from the RSS and at present working as a social worker, minced no words in severely criticising the BJP-led government in Gujarat and at the Centre for playing with the lives of the citizens, and precipitating the disintegration of India again on sectarian lines.
Nanaji Deshmukh, was earlier a member of both the Jan Sangh and the Janata Party. He has since retired from politics in 1978, and is at present working as a social worker. Several of the top functionaries both in the RSS and BJP were once his colleagues. 

Muslims, Christians condemn MEA
New Delhi: All India Muslim Majlis-e-Mushawarat (AIMMM), All India Catholic Union (AICU) and All India Christian Council (AICC) through a joint press release have said that it is shameful that the European nations are comparing the Gujarat riots at par with Nazi holocaust in Hitler’s Germany. This is therefore not only the domestic problem of India but has become an issue of international concern.
The Muslim and Christian organizations have also condemned and criticised the attempts of Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) to publish advertisements in newspapers attempting a cover-up of the genocide in Gujarat.

Beautiful painting discovered at Red Fort
New Delhi: An important yester year marvel has been discovered during the ongoing restoration work at the famed Red Fort. Beautiful paintings adorn the parapet of the Rang Mahal. The discovery was made during the restoration work at the Red Fort thus unveiling the hidden charms of the 17th century architectural marvel.
A senior official of the Archeological survey of India (ASI) disclosed that the beautiful paintings were discovered when the layers of white wash from the parapet of the Rang Mahal were being peeled off. "Marble was expensive even in the 17th century, so sea-shell plaster – a mix of sea-shell powder, jaggery, pulses, misri and batasha – was used to give a marble effect. And drawings were made on the plaster for greater effect", ASI sources informed. 

Disband Shah Commission: Shahabuddin
New Delhi: Prominent Muslim leader Syed Shahabuddin has said that Shah Commission probing Gujarat riots is not at all acceptable to the people and should be immediately disbanded. Mr Shahabuddin said that the installing of Shah Commission is an attempt to cover up Narendra Modi’s crime against Muslims. Instead, some other impartial person be appointed to head the Commission in place of Mr. Shah so that Godhra and Gujarat riots be thoroughly probed, Mr Shahabuddin said. He was reacting to Union Home Minister Lal Krishna Advani’s statement in the current session of the Parliament.


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