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Published in the 1-15 Feb 2004 print edition of MG; send me the print edition


On The Milli Gazette
In an earlier issue of the MG there was a report, "Wife’s Taj Mahal for her husband." Since it was about Budayun, I had sent one copy to Salim Sherwani, MP, Budayun. His reply is encouraging. Keep up the good work!
Zohra Javed, Allahabad (UP)


Out of many newspapers and magazines, ‘Milli Gazette’ is dearest to me. I am a regular reader of it since its first issue. I think MG is not only a magazine but is a cradle of knowledge and wisdom. Unfortunately the MG is not available in Lucknow. My students often ask me for it, but I cannot help them. The place from where it can easily be had. 
Obaidur Rahman Nadwi, Lucknow
Editor: We used to send copies to a number of booksellers in Lucknow but due to non-payment of dues all Lucknow agencies have been closed by us. 

I find your site very interesting and insightful. As per a little background on me, I'm a Guju Hindu living in the US. I'm a staunch supporter of secularism and favor Hindus taking affirmative actions in order to open more doors to our Muslim brethren in all aspects of life: social, political, economical, national.
Your views on Israel and Palestine are very troubling to me and hopefully are not indicative overall of Indian Muslims.
Jesal Desai, Dallas,Texas, US

Tamil cry over Gujarat carnage
Apropos of Sister Meena Kandasamy's article (The Milli Gazette, 16-31 January 2003). The publishers also deserve hearty congratulations for publishing a powerful justice-demanding Tamil poetry book THOTTAKKAL (Bullet). It is indeed a very fitting reply to our clever poet prime minister!!!
S Akhtar, Khanpur Deh-392150

Save Constitution from subversion
We are celebrating 53rd Republic Day. Founding fathers of the Indian constitution Pundit Nehru, Maulana Azad, Sardar Patel and particularly Dr. Ambedkar had given us lofty idealism of secular nationhood and rights and safeguards to weaker sections of society. Our constitution is a symbol of plurality, equality, justice, harmony, unity and integrity. We should not allow the Constitution to be tampered away with.
The saffronites have never accepted the Constitution which is one of the best in the world and which stood the test of the time. When KC Sudarshan was nominated (not elected) as RSS chief he had declared in Nagpur that the Constitution should be scrapped and replaced with a new one based on Hindu ethos i.e., RSS brand of Hindutva. Prime Minister Vajpayee and all the Sangh Parivar leaders kept mum on this anti-Constitution statement of the RSS chief. If the saffronites get absolute majority at the Centre they would destroy the Indian Constitution and endanger peace, unity and integrity in our country. My countrymen beware of these Constitution-haters.
G Hasnain Kaif
Azad Ward, Bhandara

Loudspeakers in Masjids
An unfortunate misinterpretation of verdict of Supreme Court (reported in AIR 2000 SC 2773) by some district authorities in Gujarat after the unfortunate riots in Gujarat in 2002, have been deliberately made by imposing complete ban on loudspeakers placed in Masjids under the guise of Supreme Court verdict.
Loudspeakers are utilised for two puposes in masjids: by proclaiming Azaan Muslims are invited to come to Masjid to perform Namaaz, which is one of the five compulsory rites of Islam and in the event of death of any Muslim of the area, the people are requested to perform Namaaz-e-Janaza followed by burial ceremony of the departed soul.
Out of five Namaaz—Fajr, Zuhr, Asr, Maghrib and Ishaa—Zuhr and Asr are during day time and Fajr, Maghrib and Ishaa are during night. Azaan of each Namaaz hardly consume three minutes. Thus, Azaan of above five Namaaz totally consume 15 to 20 minutes in a day. Besides, none of the Azaan of above five Namaaz are proclaimed between 10 pm to 6 am for which period the apex court verdict restricts user of loudspeakers for the volume of more than 55 decibels.
Even Bombay High Court on 21 December 2003 also pronounced similar ruling with respect to the use of loudspeakers in religious places. This mean that for entire 24 hours of the day the religious places are at liberty to keep the volume of 55 decibels. Despite this clear verdict, it appears that some local authorities, in order to please communal organisations, issued notification to impose complete ban to pronounce Azaan through loudspeaker with deliberate intention to deprive Muslims from fulfilling their religious obligations punctually.
A M Madani, Panchmahal, Godhra

‘Feel good factor’ 
Vajpayee & Co’s talk about "feel good" and "India shining" is like a doctor comforting a dying cancer patient, after chemotherapy and radiation, that he’s looking fresh and healthy. 
Zohra Javed, Allahabad 


The 'feel good factor' is most aptly illustrated by Mirza Ghalib's famous couplet: Mushkilain itni padeen ki saree asaan ho gaeen (There have occurred so much trouble that all became easy). Meaning thereby that in abstract terms whenever there is an excess of miseries, ailments and problems, the victims thereof have nothing but to develop a sense of resignation, tolerance and contentment.
We are having those as the guardians of our nation who ruthlessly tore apart the constitutional and secular fabric on 6 December 1992 at Ayodhya. We are having the dirtiest and most corrupt-ever generation of politicians whom we abhor from the core of our hearts, yet the providence has forced us to accept them as the makers of our destiny. Our conscience is severely hit by daily reports of minor girls being raped with impunity, the poor dying of intense cold, and the acute poverty forcing people to commit suicide. 
We are to survive, with our belief in the civilized polity shattered, through the scandals of massive magnitude involving uppermost echelons of government. We are to suffer the agony of seeing our hard-earned national assets being handed over to multi-nationals at throwaway prices. We are to undergo the humiliation of our largest democracy of the world capitulating to the wishes of American imperialism, and obsequiously following the dictates of the international financial institutions, like World Bank. We are put to the ordeal of viewing the most notorious criminals being brought from jails to attend the sessions of Law-making bodies. Against all this we have excessively cried and wept, but all have proved like a cry in wilderness. As our power of resistance has got exhausted, we have shun our frustration, and learnt the enviable and saintly art of satisfaction, stoicism and endurance. And therefore:
When our tears have dried, 
When our cries have died; 
Still, to save our nation's face, 
We assume a deceptive grace. 
With a facade of joy and pride,
We now exclaim from our side;
As a symbol of our nationhood,
We 'feel good'!: We 'feel good !'
Dr Mustafa Kamal Sherwani, Lucknow

Iraq for Iraqis
US has captured Iraq’s deposed president Saddam Husain. But where are the weapons of mass destruction? If Saddam was responsible for the death of several Iraqis, so was Bush, in the name of freedom for Iraqis. It’s the time for the US to quit and hand over Iraq to Iraqis as soon as possible. India should condemn the arrest of Saddam and urge the US to respect the human values.
Muhammad Khalid Ahmed, Jagtial (AP) 

Time award for ‘Terrorist Army’
It is no wonder that Time, an establishmentarian magazine, should select the ‘American soldier’ as ‘Person of the year’: it is a case of a TERRORIST STATE conferring this ‘honour’ on its TERRORIST ARMY.
Muhammad Nawazish Alam
Dibrugarh (Assam)

Unveiling Secularism
With the publication of the news that a panel in France has suggested that head scarf should be banned, we seem to have come full circle. All the agitation, seminars, movements against discrimination on the basis of race, caste, religion or colour seem to have been rendered null and void. Secularism seems to have adopted the visage of the most fundamental form of religion. When an entire panel after lengthy proceedings (120 hearings) suggests all blatant forms of religious symbols (read head scarf) must be banned and throughout Europe a furore brews up over the same issue (with the German feminists saying that it should not be allowed in a democratic country for it symolises repression), then we could not but feel that there is either something gone drastically wrong with the interpretation of secularism or we were badly misled.
Md Shafey Danish, JMI, New Delhi

They love qital, not Jihad
In the 16-31 Dec 2003 print edition of MG, you wrote under 'Jihad means only killing: Muslim Togadia' In the footnote you wrote: “Azhar is rejecting the Prophet’s well-known saying after returning from a battle: "We have retured from smaller Jihad (Jihad asghar) to the greater Jihad (Jihad akbar)." 
In the monthly magazine Afkar-e-Milli May' 03 'Jihad BinNafs ka mafhoom aur ek hadith ki tehqeek' is an eye-opener for all those who take the apologetic view of Islamic terms and injunctions. The hadith contradicts Qur’an itself so shouldn’t be used as it will be a great sin.

Editor: There is no such thing as "abuayha" in Arabic or any other language common here so get it right first and do not take refuge behind such screens. A Muslim must be courageous enough to identify himself with what he says. 
After getting your email, I read the article in Afkar-e-Milli and find it superfluous. It is a convoluted "Salafi" writing, aimed against Sufis in the first place, by a person who in real life believes in Jihad-for-riyal and the article itself carries many factual mistakes but this is not the place to discuss or refute them.

They want Rushdie’s blood
After hiding himself in UK for years, "The rat is out of Hole"...I demand for his 'blood'. Right from the war in Afganisthan Indian Muslims were criticised for not participating in jihad either in Afganistan or in Iraq, but now there is a golden chance to prove ourself infront of ALLAH. My message to Imam of Jama Masjid is: 'issue a fatwa to kill Rushdie'. I appeal to Islamic fanatics round the country to take revenge by killing Salman Rushdie and earn heavenly rewards from ALLAH. Do not let the Devil leave our land alive. Our wraths can be calmed only by his blood. We want to enjoy a bath from Rushdie's blood.
Siraj Mohammed 
Editor: It is a matter of shame for you to talk like this. You must be some enemy of Muslims masquerading as a "Muslim". You have every right to protest against Rushdie but no right to kill him or even to talk of killing him. No individual has a right to take the law in his/her hands. Only a proper judge, Islamic or otherwise, has a right to punish someone.

Advani on Babari
For Muslims, it is like rubbing salt on the wounds when people like LK Advani, who were believed to be the prime instigators and conspirators of the demolition of Babari Masjid, should put out on behalf of BJP-led government that he is leading any move to settle the matter in an amicable manner. The ‘wrong trends’ that Advani wants to mend, have been the handiwork of extremist elements like Advani himself and he should not blame Muslims for it. Muslims have all along been and have been for the rule of law, which his own Government is sworn to uphold. 
For all practical purposes, it will suit the communal harmony efforts, if Advani keeps out of all overt and covert efforts to muddy the waters, as he is like a red or saffron rag to the masses of Muslims, who identify him and him alone for having traversed throughout the length and breadth of India on his Rath Yatra, to campaign for a ‘ek dhakka aur do’, that took thousands of lives in communal riots following the ignominious demolition of Babari Masjid. Advani and company may be able to delay the court verdicts of their culpability on this heinous historic crime, but history will not paper over what has been a monumental destruction of India’s syncretic and pluralist ethos.
Ghulam Muhammed, Mumbai

Agents of fascism
The ransacking of the Bhandarkar Institute in Pune by Sambhaji Brigade of the Maratha Seva Sangh is a cruelty to the national heritage. It was founded in 1917 to commemorate the great contribution made by Ramakrishna Gopal Bhandarkar in the field of oriental records. Reportedly a lot of rare manuscripts were burnt to ashes. These assets of this Institute were considered valuable.
Unfortunately, in India such unholy acts are perpetrated with the connivance of one or the other political party. Political and social organisations who are supposed to be the trustees of literary and cultural wealth of the nation stood down so low in their rage is a matter of shame. 
Obaidur Rahman Nadwi, Lucknow.

Madrasah Tajweedul Quran
Thank you for publishing the news about the building project of Madrasah Tajweedul Quran. The madrasah has now built a small website ( which will help your readers know it better. 
Anwar Sadat, Gurgaon

“Peace process”
I do not think that we ought to be too optimistic about the peace process that is taking place between India and Pakistan, simply because of the kind of leaders the two countries have. In India we have Vajpayee who heads a political party that has its moorings in a fascist organisation, namely the RSS; because of this reason we cannot expect it to ever have a soft spot for the Muslims of either country. Vajpayee has his eyes on the forthcoming general elections. Peace relations with Pakistan, whether it is fake or real, could help him to attract Muslim votes. On the other hand we have Musharraf who is a veritable boot-licker of Uncle Sam. He is ever ready to do the bidding of his master. We saw how he ditched the Taliban and made the whole of Afghanistan a victim of American genocidal aggression. Hence, these two persons are harmful for both the countries. We cannot safely consider the resumption of peace process to be real. 
Muhammad Nawazish Alam, Dibrugargh 

Iraq: why July 1st?
Why not August, or September elections in Iraq? September 11th, will fall on a Saturday! Now that UN is become "relevant" again, minus a few "relevant" workers, the quickest way to make Iraq safe for UN is to have general, free elections later this year.
If Kofi Annan doesn't support free elections, then who's game is he playing? Use the grassroots that are now, to implement democracy now. The UN has already experience in supervising elections under very improvised conditions. Where there is the will, there is a way! 
The Americans are the agents of Zion. Zionism wants to split Iraq. The more time the Kurds get to consolidate, the more sure is a divided Iraq. And a caucused, provisional 18-region legislature will create the perfect environment for division. A UN headquarter in Iraq will be safer under Iraq democracy than it was with US troops looking on.
Kaj Krinsmoe, Denmark    

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