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Published in the 16-31 May 2005 print edition of MG; send me the print edition


The Milli Gazette Online

Page 1 | Page 2

Nice to see an Indian Muslim newspaper in English maa shaa Allaah. 
Hasan Syed, U.S.

I thank you very much and very sincerely for emailing me the news of the Milli Gazette. I am very concerned about the issues of the Muslim ummah.
Parvez Nuckcheddy, Mauritius

Congratulations for bringing out this excellent fortnightly. The news of Jehanabad is very apt which no other newspaper dare publish. Kudos for writing so brilliantly on President Mushharraf’s visit to Ajmer. The news covered and published looked like one was physically present during the visit.Very aptly captioned. Aman, by your writer. 
Pooja Khan, London

Broaden your knowledge, Patwardhan

This is reply to Sanjeev Patwardhan’s rejoinder published (MG, 16-30 April). First of all I would like you, Mr. Sanjeev to have prior knowledge of Islam, get some authentic books on Islam and read it thoroughly you will get your answers. But I would like to clear your misconception about Islam and Muslims in general. For your kind info let me tell you that Islam is the first religion, which brought secularism and democracy. Non- Muslims used to live in Arab during the days of our holy Prophet (pbuh) without any hesitation. Muslims never demean other faiths, they only propagate what is true in all religions i.e one God and His messenger. But you people failed to understand your own religious scriptures. Secondly we are not against any uniform civil code but it should be the best and Shariat Law is the best in this world for e.g. if anyone caught on charge of theft, his/her hands should be cut off so that next time no one dare think about theft, or in rape cases the accused should be given death penalty, and so on. There should be no loopholes for the rich and affluent class people; law should be equal to all. This is what Shari at teaches us. 

It is Islam where women enjoys much freedom and equality in comparison to other religions, you please ask the women who are embracing Islam world wide, according to a survey the ratio of women embracing Islam is higher than men. In every aspect women are treated equally but within a limitation, which is there in Islam for their own respect and benefit. Men are also bound by some limitations. As far as the female Imam is concern, there are lady Imams but only for female not for all. Islam strictly prohibits free mixing of male and female.

So Mr. Patwardhan I think you should broaden your knowledge on religions and make a comparative study on it so that you could understand Islam in its true sense. And thus you could be able to distinguish the true and false. I hope I have given the answer about your queries. 
Md Shahid Rafique, Kolkata

Please refer to brother Sanjeev’s letter (MG 16-30 April). I very much appreciate him for the pain he took in writing this letter, because this provides an opportunity, to clarify misgivings and to promote better understanding between the two communities. I do not want to enter into arguments because it seldom leads to solution but yes; exchange of views is always fruitful. Brother S. raised many points in his brief and beautiful letter, and I must admit I have failed to make a brief reply and I expect MG and brother S. to bear with me.

It is wrong to say that Muslim media has started crying for secularism only after watching the recent ascendancy of the Hindu "nationalists". Questions regarding Muslim contribution to the concept of secularism, and loyalty to secularism are also misplaced. In fact Muslim media has been crying since 1905, for "Social Justice (satta me bhagidari)" and for "Non interference in intra community affairs". It is not a recent phenomenon that Hindu "extremists" (all true "nationalists" whether Hindu, Muslim or Secular, promote justice) have started exerting great influence over Indian politics. The modern Indian politics is nothing but an epic battle being fought between status quoist upper castes Hindu hegemonists versus other under privileged communities (Muslims, SC, ST, Backwards) who are struggling to secure their proportionate share in the polity and wealth of the nation. Partition of Bengal provided an opportunity for political and economic growth to the Muslims of East Bengal, but it was bitterly opposed by the Hindu extremists led by famous Lal, Bal and Pal. Congress-Muslim League concord was achieved in 1916 under Lucknow pact but later on Congress reneged in 1928. Separate electorate was granted to the SC but Hindu extremists got it aborted by the Poona Pact and Ambedkar always regretted why he was buckled by the threats of increased violence against Dalits. During the Round Table Conference Congress asked Muslim League to not support the Dalits on the issue of separate electorate. Congress and Muslim league had agreed for a federal India as per "Cabinet Mission plan" but later on Nehru reneged and accepted partition because Hindu extremists were apprehensive that after a few years 33% Muslim, 15% SC, 5% ST would permanently capture the federal govt. of India. 
Meraj Shahab, Delhi-25 

Are you naraz?
I was expecting the attached two letters to be published. I am surprised that they have been ignored. Is the MG naraz?
A reader in UK

Editor: There is no question of being 'naraz'... From the very beginning, I mostly avoid publishing letters sent to others. I also avoid publishing "statements" which every neta and organisation here feels duty-bound to issue whenever there is something of any consequence but I mostly avoid them. Urdu press is full with such letters and statements. I tell these people: please do something and I will cover it.

You are blinding Muslims
Good Efforts. But you are blinding Muslims to be communal. Why you are doing apart Muslims from Bharat? I can show your vision behind the site. Do not be so communal. 
Kalpana, Bharat

Temples in Pakistan
When the Babri Masjid was torn down by Hindu extremists, in Pakistan Muslim extremists tore down not one but a dozen 11th century temples. No one has addressed the issue of those temples in Pakistan. If the Muslims in India want their Babri Masjid back shouldn’t the Hindus demand the same from Pakistan, the restoration of those 11th century temples. Why is all the emphasis on the Babri Masjid given by the press and no coverage about the ancient Hindu temples in Pakistan that were torn down in retaliation?
Chrysantha Wijeyasingha, 
New Orleans, US
Editor: According to our information, the then PM, Nawaz Sharief, summoned Hindu leaders in Pakistan at once and offered them funds to repair their temples to their satisfaction. He also ordered the police to arrest the culprits and beat them up properly in police stations which they did.

You hate Jews
Your Internet newsletter obviously hates the little Jewish State... and that is a fact which condemns you to the heap of other hate mongers in this world. Why don't you teach peace and tolerance rather than the trashy hatred against Israel so commonly found in your journal? Talk about what is preached in the mosques throughout the Arab World, and in Iran, which preaches hatred for Israel and Jews. Do that, rather than the bullshit that you discuss. That is what matters. What is preached in the mosques is what matters. Focus upon that, and focus upon transforming that into tolerance and peace rather than the continued cycle of hatred that is currently espoused by Arabic and Iranian religious clergy.
L. Silverberg
Editor: We do not preach hatred for Jews. We condemn the Israeli policies which enslave Palestinians and usurp their land and rights. If Jews have rights, Palestinians and others too have rights. Give Palestinians their rights and there will be no issue.

KR Narayanan’s Exposure 
The Milli Gazette is becoming very popular day by day by its genuine articles on religion and politics. 

We enjoyed the article by Mr IK Shukla, ‘A Mussolini, a Hitler and a Niemoeller by IK Shukla, wherein in our beloved ex-president KR Narayan’s hapless condition in avoiding genocide by Gujarat Government on Muslim minority and who witnessed the entire episode as a silent spectator. Where his morality and Presidential power had gone? Now he is making statements against Mr Vajpayee and LK Advani on the ground that he was not given a chance for the II term as president. Is it patriotism or opportunism? Mr Ex-President? APJ Kalam’s mission in promoting the ideals in youth and the young students is very great. No body can be equal to our present President who made India Proud in all fields.
Mohammad Azam, Karim Nagar, AP 

Lakdawala tends to generalise
Hope this letter finds you in good heath. This is with reference to Mr MH Lakdawala’s article "Managing Zakat and donation of the community" (MG, 1-15 April). I think Mr Lakdawala’s article manifest the mismanagement of zakat by all the Islamic/ social organisation throughout the world that is untrue, (a) As per the principle of reason, one cannot rely on the sample of few, which may not be the true representative of population, (b) It is unfair to generalise on the basis of the sample who is not a fair representative of the population. 

An article of similarl nature was also published in recent past in Islamic Voice. Mr. Lakdawala has many articles on the contemporary issues of the Muslim community. But these articles were based on some survey and statistical information were not satisfactory. As he always try to generalise on the basis of the sample who may not the true representative of the population.

I would like to request Mr Lakdawala to consider various aspects before presenting his views. It is not my intention to hurt him but to let him know that this paper is read by millions of people around the globe. People may have wrong notions about any issue and this may not be the purpose of 
Mr Lakdawala. At last forgive me if he feels hurt.
Mirza Mahfooz Baig, Yavatmal, Maharashtra 

Urdu university

In your issue of 1-15 April, 205 you have published two reports on the passage of Mohammad Ali Jauhar University Bill, 2004 by the UP Assembly for the establishment of the proposed University as a private University by the Maulana Mohammad Ali Jauhar Trust, which is headed by Mr. Mohd. Azam Khan.

A private university normally runs with private resources including its earnings; it is not entitled to State support. However, some private universities which have been recognized as Deemed Universities by the UGC get some grants from the UGC but, having been statutorily established, this option is now closed to this University. As for the word ‘Maulana’, it was obviously dropped by the mover of the Bill because of a technical hitch, not because anyone was opposed to it. The Government of India has established the Central Urdu University and also an educational foundation in the name of Maulana Azad. Indeed the great freedom fighter is known universally as Maulana Mohammad Ali, and not so much as Mohammad Ali Jauhar.

But those who want a Urdu University in the State, which has indeed the largest Urdu-speaking population in the country, have not yet responded to two questions.
* Why don’t they agitate for acceptance of Urdu as a medium of primary instruction and as the First and Compulsory Language at the Secondary stage for those students whose Mother Tongue is Urdu?

* Why don’t they produce statistics regarding the average number of students who annually pass B.A. with Urdu, B.A. with Honours in Urdu and M.A. in Urdu from various Universities in UP, alongwith their respective sanctioned admission capacity, in order to prove that the existing facilities are inadequate?

Similarly, the need for teaching of Arabic and Persian can be met by providing facilities for these languages also as optional subjects in high school curriculum and by fully utilizing the post-graduate Departments of Arabic and Persian in various Universities, apart from several Madrasas, Jamias and Darul Ulooms of high standard in the State, which may be affiliated to a separate University of Arabic, Persian and Islamic Studies.

There is indeed obvious room for another Muslim Technical University in Rampur like the pioneer Integral University, Lucknow, which would enjoy Article 30 status and serve the community.
Syed Shahabuddin,

Girls unsafe in Muslim localities
This is with reference to ‘Promote Girl’s Education’ (MG, 16-30 April). Along with other problems faced by girls in acquiring education, the Muslim girls living in Muslim dominated have to face eve-teasing and the rubbish slogans of the boys living in these areas. Eve-teasing, rubblish remarking, unsafe and insecure position of adult girls is more common in thickly populated Muslim areas, where lower middle class, daily wagers and labourers, and uneducated though financially well established people reside, along with them there are also a few educated Muslim families who are bound to live in such areas because of the fear of communal riotsl. Towns are divided in Muslim and non-Muslim localities in UP. The educated families interested in education of their girls after 10+2 are having the problem of insecurity. There is no check on the boys misbehaving with the girls. Any complaint against them creates enmity. 
It is a risky affairs for girls to receive better and higher education. This is an issue which has not been redressed by any government. We are the victims of our social trend, culture and lifestyle. 
S. Shafiq Ahmad, Meerut

The aim behind sati 
Who can describe the motto behind sati better than Narendra Modi? The modern day hero of Gujarati Hindutwawaad is reported to have said: "The British Viceroy William Bentick did a very great disservice to India by banning the Hindu religious ritual of widow-burning. Had the prathaa continued we would not have faced emergency." What the Gujarat CM wants to convey is that had the sati ritual continued, Indira Gandhi would have burnt herself on a pyre after the death of Feroz Gandhi and she would not have been able to impose emergency. Bravo ‘brave’ man!
S Akhtar, Khanpur Deh-392150

Reservation for Muslims
With reference to the report in your esteemed paper (1-15 April, 2005) regarding the Conference on Reservation for Muslims organized by the Pasmandah Qaumi Tanzeem (PQT) at Azamgarh on 27 February, 2005, there is no doubt a growing consensus that the Constitution (SC) Order, 1950 should be further amended to eliminate altogether the religious condition in defining SC’s and thus to include all social groups, irrespective of religion of birth or of choice, engaged in the same or analogous occupations as the Hindu SC’s.

Yet, such ‘SC-like’ groups which profess Islam have so far been included in the State lists of OBC’s. But there is no data available on their population but they are very small groups by all indications.

It is not clear from the report whether the PQT would like the entire Muslim community to be included in the list of SC’s. If so, this would be preposterous, unacceptable to both the Muslims and the SC’s. Moreover, it is not established whether the Muslim groups, which are analogous to the SC’s, would like to shift from the OBC list to the SC list and whether they will benefit from such shift.It would have been useful for your correspondent to quote the Resolution adopted at the Conference and also the Message of the President of the All India Muslim Personal Law Board.

Not much is known about the Tanzeem. As far as I know it is a breakaway group from the A.I. Backward Muslim Morcha, Patna led by Dr. Ejaz Ali.

It may be kept in mind that many forces are at work to divide the Muslim community on the basis of ‘castes’ particularly when the entire community is poised to claim and struggle for reservation as a Backward Class and thus weaken it.
Syed Shahabuddin

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