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A matter of shame

Under the circumstances when the wounds of Gujarat are not yet fully healed and sense of sorrow over the demolition of Babri Masjid is still haunting the minds of Muslims, in a cosmopolitan city like Mumbai which is the focus of attention of the whole country, riots and fights between two Muslim sects inside a mosque is indeed a very shameful and condemnable incident.

Sectarian differences are no doubt very old in our Umma and have been there in all ages but such differences do not mean that Muslims professing two or more sects should become such inveterate enemies as to take up lathis and swords against each other in all ferocity, and that too in a mosque. A mosque is after all called house of God, a place for offering prayers, a place of respect, peace and blessing. It does not behove Muslims, whichever sect they follow, to make it a place for settling their scores and those who make it a place for rioting, fighting, taking out swords and lathis and be prepared for killing and get killed are highly condemnable.

No words are too strong to condemn the riots that took place recently in a mosque in the Mogra Para area of Andheri, Mumbai between groups of people professing two different sects. It was the duty of Muslims of Mumbai and their leaders to rise above petty differences and settle the matter peacefully among themselves, failing which they should have taken recourse to Charity Commissioner or Courts. By doing so, they have made themselves a laughing stock before non-Muslims.

How sorrowful it is that because of riots over taking possession of the mosque by people of Deobandi and Barelvi sects, ‘Isha’ or night prayers could not be offered in the mosque. If a non-Muslim throws a stone inside a mosque, or a precession passes with bands and music by the route near a mosque, if he throws ‘gulal’ or a dead ‘haram’ animal in front of the mosque, Muslim get infuriated and describe these things as insulting, unholy, profane and what not and take to the streets. If we ourselves make mosques as battle grounds, take out swords, lathis and stones etc, with what face we can expect or ask non-Muslims to respect our mosques?

Whether or not or whatever action is taken by the police in this matter, it is also the duty of Ulama of Mumbai, Ulama Council, Raza Academy, Jamiatul Ulama-e-Hind, Jamait Islami, Tablighi Jamait, leaders of Deobandi and Barelvi sects to settle the matters peacefully among themselves and try to remove the misunderstandings and bad blood among the Muslims of the affected and neighbouring areas. As regards the Mogra Mpara mosque dispute, it should better be left to the law and court to decide.

¯ Urdu Times

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