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MG: Excellent newspaper

Milli Gazette is an excellent newspaper published from New Delhi. It focusses on the affairs and concerns of the Muslim community around the world and especially South Asia. It not only has indepth articles on current affairs and problems that the worldwide Ummah is facing, but also discusses historical issues and deals with queries about religion. I would urge all Muslims, especially from the Indian subcontinent, to strengthen this voice by increasing its circulation.
Zafar Iqbal (Washington)

I have just gone through your paper today. Its excellent. Keep up the good work
Mohamed Aslam, Abu Dhabi UAE

Please accept my best wishes for this noble effort of yours for our community.
Living abroad is not so luxurious or satisfying as people think. I have gone through lots of tough times. When I think of returning back home the only thing which keeps me pulling is the condition/plight of ourselves where inspite of being secular and democratic we are worst than slaves. That’s why I chose to be a slave with better perks.
Zafar Nazim

Let me congratulate first for the efforts and endeavors in arising to the need of the hour in launching a Muslim English Newspapers. May Almighty Allah bless your efforts. My suggestions are: Please try to censure sectarianism in Muslims in India and abroad and this is the number one enemy of Islam and the enemies of Islam are working overtime to encourage sectarianism in Islam. Secondly: please launch a campaign to enlighten the Islamic madrasas, their founders and the Muslims in to add in their curriculum the technical and professional courses so that a Religious scholar (Alim, Hafiz or Fadhil) must be a technician or a professional who can seek his livelihood honorable by practising his trade or profession he was taught at the school and serve the Islam. (This is a very critical issue: As hundreds of thousands students graduate from such schools with obsolete syllabus and could not find any honorable job and end up being Imams and Mouzzins of Mosques with meagre salaries and this kill the spirit with which their parents imparted them the religious schooling and the spirit with which the Muslims donate their valuable money for such schools), Thirdly: Give more importance to education and exhort Muslims day in and day out about the importance of education as it is the key to standing up honorably as a community. Fourthly: Try to establish a Mass Media school where Muslims students are trained in thousands every year for all branches of Mass Media and Journalism (this is a key sector - remember how Jews being a small minority control the powerful governments by controlling the Educational Institutions, Media and Banking). May God bless your endeavors. amen.
Mohamed Hussain, Dubai

I have been a reader of Milli Gazette for a long time. Lately, I'm feeling that this news paper is becoming an instrument to spread poison in our beloved country through negative articles written by so called Muslim writer/leader Syed Shahabuddin. This act of yours is forcing me to change my views on each and every subject and become a true follower of Advani and Joshi. I do not want to be a hardliner but you are forcing me to become one.
Is this your real intention by publishing negative articles? I'm not opposed to freedom of expression. Also, I believe that truth must be told to people no matter what. Let the people decide. I know Mr. Shahabuddin very well as a journalist and Member of Parliament. Decency died the day Janata Dal gave him a ticket to run an election on anti-India agenda. On each and every issue he is against mainstream. No follower of Vishwanath Pratap Singh in my view is patriot. You are doing disservice to our great country and Muslim community by poisoning it. Please stop it.
Krishan Gopal, Mt Laurel, NJ-08054 

Kuldip Nayar
By making a considered response to Kuldip Nayar's article you have taken the lead in doing something that every thinking Muslim needs to do at every level, in every available forum, which is to engage the other side in a dialogue. We need to have such debates as much among ourselves as with the enemies of a multicultural India.
You are, of course, on target on many of the issues Nayar has raised. But I wondered whether you have addressed his view that Muslim intelligentsia has failed to speak out against "Muslim fundamentalists." We probably have a good idea who the secularists think are the fundamentalists (which obviously is a wrong application of a term originally used in the U.S. to describe Bible-literalist Christians). But there are, in my humble opinion, Muslim rabble-rousing politicians disguised as moulvis and shahi imams who never utter a positive word about India or Indian political system; who have no sympathy for India as a nation; who play on the religious sentiments of Muslims; who have nothing to say about the social problems of Muslims; and who oppose any and all reforms in Muslim personal laws. Those who see nothing but evil in the way Islam has been practiced in the Indian environment definitely are fundamentalists. If they confine their activities to the theological forums, there would be no problem. But their vision insists on keeping deen and duniya on the same plane, which is a completely a historical view (in the Othmanlis, in the Mughal and Safavi worlds they were separate spheres; as well as in the Abbasi and Andalus periods).
You are right when you point out the atrocities and indignities committed against Muslims on a daily basis. However, when you say that "Muslims have not lost faith in secularism as a state policy" I wonder if you are not overlooking the fact that no theologically consistent formulation of secularism has been debated or developed in the Indian context. Not by the much respected Ali Mian, not by Abdul Majid Dariyabadi, not by Syed Ahmed Khan, or Shibli, certainly not by Maudoodi. Only weakly by Abul Kalam Azad and Zakir Hussain as far as I know. To my limited knowledge, Mohsinul Mulk and Chiragh Dehlavi are the only ones who have come close to such a formulation.
It's true that "our society is in a flux" and "Muslims have a role and a stake in this battle" between the secularists and the Hindutva forces. Muslims are a part of this battle, but my question is whether we ourselves have developed a clear vision of a secularist and multicultural India. May I suggest that you ensure that Kuldip Nayar gets a copy your very thoughtful response to his article?
Usama Khalidi (US)

Maulana Jalaluddin Umari
It was interesting to see the interview of Maulana Jalaluddin Umari appeared in the
MG of June 1 - 15. The intelligent interviewer has asked him some very interesting and relevant questions.
In reply to the first question "What Jamaat is doing now?" Maulana says first and foremost thing is that in India we cannot imagine any change till the majority of the people are acquainted with Islam and understand what Islam is. He further says that people associated with the jamaat should take it as their responsibility to make the mass understand Islam properly.
I would like to bring to the notice of Maulana that most of the people associated with Jamaat-e-Islami are so proud of their piety and so presumptuous that they don't even bother to say salam to others. So in this situation how is it possible for others to expect anything from them. According to what I experienced, people associated with the Jamaat do not have any interaction with the masses and that is, as I understand, because of their unreasonable thinking of being super human being.
Replying to another question Maulana claims that the Jamaat is trying to solve the educational, economic and other problems that the Muslim community is facing now. May I ask Maulana: can he give an example as to how Jamaat is trying to solve these problems?
Further Maulana proudly says in reply to another question that the role of the Jamaat in the aftermath of Gujarat earthquake has been highly praised by the Gujarat government and has also been offered to be accepted as an NGO.
Is it not a matter of shame and pity that Maulana is feeling proud after being praised by an impious and unholy, corrupt and un-Islamic government? So far I was feeling sorry seeing only the roles of Tablighi Jamaat being hailed by the Indian governments. But now I think I should be prepared for Jamaat Islami's as well. It is really a matter of deep concern
Most interestingly, in reply to another question Maulana says that Jamaat wants democracy to continue in the country because in democracy every person has a right to follow the ideas he believes. It seems that Maulana is not aware of what kind of persons have used their rights to follow their ideas in the 53 years' of the Indian democracy. If a smuggler, a murderer, a corrupt bureaucrat or politician expresses his desire for the democracy to continue in this country then it sounds reasonable. But I am astounded and embarrassed to see the same desire expressed by the Maulana.
I am sorry to say that I am not satisfied and convinced with Maulana's conversation. Being in such a pious position one should not speak the language of an impious MLA, MP and minister.
Shamsul Arifin, AF Enclave, New Delhi -25

Syed Shahabuddin
Is he the same Shahabuddin Saheb of Babri Masjid Action (later Co-ordination) Committee convener?.. If he is the same Shahabuddin Saheb, then really its a sad news that he is back in AMU affairs and hopefully, the AMU EC will break-up in AMU-Co-ordination Committee and AMU-EC very soon. Its not an offence to him but a hard fact. He was a MP when Babri Mosque was demolished and he did not have the courage to resign from the parliament in protest. I was very young when I first saw him in Shamshad Market when he launched the Insaf Party there in 1989. They kept the community in dark on the Babri mosque issue. If they have not fought each other for the dinner with the then PM then we have not lost the Babri Mosque. Recently he wrote a big article on the Bamiyan (destruction of Budh-dha statue) issue but I did not find anything from him when Qur’an was burned in DELHI by RSS and Bajrang Dal activist and Muslims of Kanpur protested against this act and once again PAC showed its true face in
Afzal Usmani

It is apparent that what Taleban is preaching and enforcing is an extreme form of misinterpretation of Sharia Law. It is pity that the Muslims are tolerating such religious bigotry perpetrated by power-hungry maniacs. Never during the time of the Holy Prophet (pbuh) such intolerance was meted against other religions, women and children.
It is an example of absolute infringement of basic human rights like freedom of speech, education, working, dressing, movement, living, religion etc. The worst being all done in the name of Islam.
Countries like Qatar and Saudi Arabia which are staunch Islamic are surging ahead in field of science, technology, economy and trade emerging as the key states of the world.
Talebans can only boast of achievements like razing the unique archeological heritage of Bamiyan, closing down foreign-aided hospitals, obstructing WFP (World Food Programme) on pretext laughable and adding to the woes of their already aggrieved citizens.
Imtiyaz Khan, Doha, Qatar

Suicide and martyrdom
Jazaakumullah for publishing Allaamah Yusuf al-Qaradwi’s fatwa regarding Muslim Mujaahideen’s self-sacrificing operations. Verily the anti-Islam media is using terms like this in such a way that even some ‘ulema’ too are deceived the devil’s modern day technique of pushing un-Islamic meanings in the minds of Muslims.
Khanpur Deh 392 150

Cry baby!
I feel sad to say this that the tone of publication is outright communal. By blaming Hindus for all true and perceived ills of the Indian Muslims, you are doing disservice to them. It is the same tone that has kept Pakistan and most muslim countries from developing. Do not ignore daily sectarian killings in Karachi. You do not find such events in India, let alone in any Indian city. Indian Muslims have not migrated to Pakistan mainly because they know they would be worse off. The migrated Muslims are facing discrimination after 52 years. Whatever happened to Muslim brotherhood?
Pakistan is also bankrupt and unstable. You do seem to twist facts each day. I would be least surprised to see you disappear from the Internet very soon. People do not behave like cry babies.
Anil Kalke
Editor: It seems you are doing only selective reading of our paper.

I read your editorial with interest. What Kuldip Nayar says is what I have been feeling for quite sometime.
The silence of Muslim intellectuals on many issues is very disturbing. Let us take the Shah Bano case. Despite attempts by Rajiv Gandhi to do something good for the Muslim women (I felt he was sincere and there was no ulterior motive). The entire Muslim clergy and 'so-called' leader protested vehemently against the act and forced the government to withdraw the progressive piece of legislation. I did not see much criticism from Muslim intellectuals about the obscurantist views. Or is it your contention that what happened in the Shah Bano case was right. If any single incident has hurt the image of Muslims, it is the Shah Bano incident. It has set you back by hundreds of years.
In your editorial there is one very intriging and evocative sentence 'Is their denial of support for the separatist movement not enough'. How does one know that you have denied support unless you come out openly and say that you do not support. By being silent on the issue you are only giving out the signal that you support them. If some thing is going wrong in front of you and if you keep quiet what does it mean?? In sanskrit there is a saying Maunam samatha lakshanam (silence is a sign of support/acceptance).
Please be bold and criticize what is wrong. Lots of things are wrong in both societies (Hindu and Muslim). There are thousands and thousands of critics in Hinduism who are openly critical of the injustices in society (untouchability, caste, oppression etc).
But the distinct impression I have been feeling (correct me if i am wrong), is the distinct lack of critics among the muslim intelligentsia. Unless they speak up the society cannot be cleansed. Are they scared of the Mullahs.
It is because of the courage of Hindu intelligentsia (from Raja ram Mohanroy, Vivekananda, Gandhiji, Nehru etc etc ) that Hindu society has reformed to the extent that it has ( the the reform is nowhere near what it should be).

Editor: Denial of support does not mean that we are silent. Muslim community normally expresses itself in Urdu and this is not read by non-Muslims in the country.
In MG we have editorially spoken out against the secessionist movement in J&K and taken the stand in various ways and on various platforms. But alas these things are ignored by the 'national media'.. Just as an example: About three years ago I wrote a very lengthy article in the Kuwaiti weekly, Al-Mujtama, about why, as an Indian Muslim, I reject the secessionist movement in J&K and this has cost me dearly. Not only I am no longer writing for this important magazine (I was a regular contributor), my long-established reputation in the Arab World as a journalist and author is in ruins hurting me in many ways. I appeared in a 2-hour long verbal duel against a Pakistani propagandist in the most prominent programme of the most prominent TV station in the Arab World (Qatar's Aljazeerah TV) shortly after Kargil. This added to my problems in that area but I do not care. Yet all this does not stop me personally from exposing the human rights violations and denial of justice in the Valley.

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