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Posted Online on Thursday 14, July 2005 01:59 IST

Muslim Political Council's report on the Imrana episode

Published in the print edition of The Milli Gazette (16-31 July 2005)

The following is a translation of a report issued on 25 June 2005 by the Delhi-based Muslim Political Council after its delegation headed by Dr Taslim Rehmani visited Charthawal village and video recorded interviews there which was later shown to the media at Delhi on 30 June:

Dr Taslim RehmaniThe way in which the print and electronic media have presented the incident of the alleged violation of chastity, or rape, of a Muslim woman, Imrana, by her father-in-law, Mohammed Ali in Muzaffarnagar district's Charthawal town is against facts. The whole incident is a case of calumny, a result of an unsuccessful attempt by the media to blackmail Imrana and her in-laws. There was neither any panchayat meeting in Charthawal about the incident nor any Darul Uloom, Darul Ifta or Mufti, etc. issued any formal fatwa on this issue. The statement published or telecast by the newsmedia that Imrana and her husband Noor Ilahi have expressed their views not to abide by the verdict of Shariat and instead to agree to the verdict of a civil court is also not correct.

The above views were expressed by an 8-member delegation of the Muslim Political Council of India on its return to Delhi after touring Charthawal and meeting the people there. This delegation was led by the president of the Council, Dr Tasleem Ahmad Rahmani. On their visit to Charthawal, these people met the concerned persons, had detailed discussion with them and video-recorded their statements.

It was stated that some twenty days ago, Imrana’s father-in-law Mohammed Ali tried to molest and rape her around 10 at night. Imrana immediately complained about it to her mother-in-law who apologized to her (Imrana) and beseeched her not to tell this to anyone, including her husband Noor Ilahi, so that the family should not earn a bad name. But Imrana told this incident to her husband Noor Ilahi on his return. Thereafter, both Imrana and Noor Ilahi mentioned this to Imrana’s brothers who along with other members of the family had a fight with Mohammed Ali and thrashed him. It may be stated here that Imrana’s parents are no more. Some two-three persons in the locality intervened and decided that Imrana, being the daughter-in-law of the house, will continue to live here. This was the joint decision of the responsible members of the two families. No panchayat had any say in this decision.

This matter would have ended there if some selfish persons would not have interfered in the matter and made Hindi daily Dainik Jagran‘s reporter, Skakti, a party to this incident. Noor Ilahi’s two close relatives Jameel and Shah Deen revealed the incident to Shakti and thereafter tried to blackmail Noor Ilahi and his family members by saying that he should pay Rs 10,000, otherwise the whole incident will be published in Dainik Jagran. Poor Noor Ilahi and his family members were not in a position to pay this amount and expressed their inability. True to their words, the entire incident was published in next day’s issue of Dainik Jagran.

 

When Zee TV’s representative, Dileep, read this news, he made a spicy news based on this incident and telecast it on Zee TV. Thereafter the whole electronic media was attracted to this and each channel presented this news according to its own expediency and business interests, without any reliable and authentic enquiry, in such a way as if this was judgement or fatwa of Islamic Shariah. Some self-styled policemen of Shariat compelled Imrana and her husband to live separately. Thereafter, some women’s organisations met Imrana and allegedly offered her Rs 5000 without any demand from her and insisted upon her to make a statement that instead of Shariah judgement, she will give preference to court’s judgement.

It may also be noted that Imrana on her own did not lodge any complaint with the police, but after the publication of the news, police on its own came to Imrana and on the pretext of orders from above compelled her to give a statement. Not only this, after continuous insistence they got her medically examined after 15 days and compelled her to have her statement recorded before a magistrate. One can only imagine as to what would be the medical report of a married woman, 15 days after she was allegedly raped, especially that she was living with her husband for quite sometime after the alleged rape, not to speak of the authenticity and correctness of this step.

The background of this whole matter is that for the past several months a dispute is going on between Noor Ilahi and his father about partition of their ancestral house. Noor’s father wants to sell the house to pay the debt of Rs 20,000 but Noor and Imrana do not want the house to be sold. Because of the lingering dispute, according to eye-witnesses, three days before the alleged incident in question Imrana’s father-in-law Mohammed Ali had made an unsuccessful attempt to commit suicide by swallowing poison.

As regards fatwa in this case, it is meaningless because the above mentioned two persons Jameel and Shah Deen had casually asked Mohammed Shameem, a local maulvi who is a teacher in a local Madrasa and who is neither a Mufti nor has a deep knowledge of Shariat, that if a father-in-law rapes or commits adultery with his daughter-in-law, what is Shariat’s rule for such a person or such an act. Maulvi Mohammed Shameem, without referring to Shariat, expressed his own opinion that the marriage of such a wife to her husband will be annulled.

When the delegation members talked to Maulvi Shameem in this connection, he said that he was neither fully aware of this incident nor had expected the gravity or consequences of his views. He had simply given his opinion when asked about it. In spite of repeatedly questioning by the delegation about the basis in Shariat of this rule, he failed to give any logical reference.

Local Ulama and some responsible people told the delegation that the views of Shar’i court of Muzaffarnagar district have been sought in this case but so far no reply has been received. Darul Uloom, Deoband has also declined to issue any fatwa in this matter and advised to refer this case to Muzaffarnagar Shariah court at Sarawat.

After visiting Charthawal, and making enquiries and recording the statements of the concerned people, the Muslim Political Council feels that this incident is nothing but sensationalisation of an incident by media, the aim of which is simply to blow up a small and ordinary incident in order to project a bad image of Muslims and make fun of Islam. The Council feels that such attitude of the media is a criminal conspiracy to discredit Islam and such incidents receive wide publicity because the Muslim Personal Law Board and other Muslim organisations adopt criminal silence or raise their voice only when the conspiracies of the enemies are almost successful.

The President of the Council has demanded that the Muslim Personal Law Board should take immediate action in such cases and should also take immediate steps to counter the unnecessary and irresponsible statements of Maulvis and non-Muftis, and take disciplinary action against them. At the same time, it should make known Shar’i commands and instructions regarding such cases so that irresponsible media should not get any opportunity to indulge in such shameless and base games. Dr Rahmani has warned Indian media that if no caution and control is exercised in reporting religious events or incidents with religious implications, the matter will be brought to the notice of the Press Council of India and suitable legal action will be taken against the erring media.

The delegation included Pervez Aftab Siddiqi, General Secretary, Dr Hasan Raza Kameli, spokesman, Sayeed Ahmad, Maulana Arshad Jamali, Salim Amrohi, Badruzzaman etc. Earlier, a two-member delegation comprising Sayeed Ahmad and Mirza Aabad Husain had visited Charthawal to make preliminary enquiries.

Muslim Political Council of India, www.mpcindia.org, drrehmani2003@yahoo.co.in «

Read Also:

- Imrana case: Rape by Media

:: Imrana on video - no rape

- Text of the Question and fatwa on Imrana

- Statements on Imrana case

- "Deoband Fatwa"

 

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