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Published in the 16-31 Oct 2004 print edition of MG; send me the print edition

A 'Model' Nikahnama

A social organisation called the Majlis Manch under the chairmanship of a senior lawyer Mrs. Flavia Agnes has released a new "model" Nikahnama for the Muslims in India. It is astonishing. How the group has entered into the business of interfering in the matter of the Islamic Shariat Law. The Nikahnama in use since centuries is based on Islamic principles.

It is felt that they are playing in the hands of a group self styled "progressives" with Muslim names who are mostly non-practicing and many non-believing in Islam. They are also indirectly helping the basic agenda of the Sangh Pariwar to hate Islam on flimsy grounds. They create issues out of no issue.

A few Muslim ladies are also involved in preparing the "Model". Are the respectable sisters not aware that the instrument of the solemnization of Nikah is not a reason of the miseries the Muslims are passing through in India? Love and respect between father and daughter as well as the rights to the women in Islam are at the peak of the nobility and decency in the human history. Muslim men are most careful for the welfare of their daughters. Prophet Muhammad's (Peace be upon him) commands in this respect are the essence of the great values in the human society and highly admired. 

It is well-known that the fifty percent of the dwellers in the slums are Muslims. Despite being the 14 % (of total population of India) they get hardly 1 % allocation in the Housing Board Colonies. We are lagging far behind in education and economic fields due to the shameful and unbearable attitude of the politicians and the authorities who are involved in a hateful casteism among their own community. They are treating Muslims worse than the "low" classes in Hindus.

The atrocities on women are widely prevailing in Indian society. Our Hindu sisters are at the receiving ends hundred times more than the Muslims. The Manch must be well aware that the tradition of Sati and Devdasi are the tips of the iceberg of the horrible practices. Hygienically too they are worst sufferers as per the reports published by the Cancer Society of India with regard to the disease of the Uterus Cancer among the women. No one cares for them, for what reason? Why so much concentration on Muslim women who are fortunate and privileged with esteem, high regards and dignity under the Islamic Shariat.
We request Madam Agnes and her Manch to kindly refrain from the futile exercise of infringement in the Shariat Laws. We are already fighting for our survival on multiple fronts in India, why are they adding one more. Many ills found are the product of our living in inhuman conditions. Please do not play the role of the frogs who kick the elephant fallen in the marshland. Muslim masses along with the clergy had fought the War of Independence of India and now wish to fight the poverty, ignorance and unemployment to rescue the community, nay the whole nation. Please do not drag us on another battle field.

M. I. Ansari, Bhiwandi

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