Maulana who allegedly ridiculed Garba is slapped in court premise: Clerics appeal to Muslim youths to stay away from Graba
Ahmedabad, Abdul Hafiz Lakhani(TCN): The controversial cleric from Kheda Maulana Mehdi Hasan was slapped by a VHP worker when police was taking him towards court compound. He was produced today in the produced in Thasara court after he was arrested for his alleged ridicule of Garba festival.
Maulana Mehdi Hasan who was in international media glare in 2011 when then Gujarat CM Narendra Modi refused to wear a skull cap which was offered by him once again raised a controversy in Gujarat and took communal passion higher in already charged up atmosphere in wake of Love Jihad.
Maulana who allegedly ridiculed Garba is slapped in court premise
File photo of Maulana Mehdi Hasan with then Gujarat CM Narendra Modi (Courtesy: Indian Express)
The VHP worker breached the police cordon and raised slogans, and slapped the Maulana on his face. The Maulana looked disturbed as he fell down.
The police quickly whisked away the cleric to the Magistrate court where Maulana refused to appeal for bail and declined to hire a lawyer. He was sent to judicial custody of one month, till 23 October.
Reacting to the Hindutva forces’ decree of debarring Muslim youth of entering Garba, the Maulana was quoted in media as saying that the Navratri as a festival of demons and Muslim youths should refrain from going to such occasions.
Before his arrest Maulana Mehdi Hasan had clarified that his comments were taken out of context. “I said those words with a particular reference. By devils I meant those who are drunkards and rapists and not everyone who enjoys that festival. I am a Sufi who believes in bringing peace among communities. I actually drew attention of Hindus to keep such elements away from such religious festivals to restore the sanctity.
But my views were taken otherwise,” he had said over phone.
Meanwhile, clerics and Muslim bodies alike have denounced his statement, and demanded actions against him for use of such foul language. Demanding actions, the Imam Shahi Sadat committee clarified that this so called Sufi Maulana was not a member of the committee.
Clerics appeal to Muslim youth to stay away from Graba:
Many Muslims have actually fallen in line with the ban. Several mosques in Anand, Patan and Godhra have asked Muslims to stay away from garba because “it is against the tenets of Islam to do so.”
Some garba organisers in the state have announced that “only those Muslim boys dressed in traditional attire and accompanied by their families will be allowed to participate in the festivities.”
The artistes feel the festival is being needlessly communalized.
The VHP has also issued a warning to the Anandiben led BJP government to ensure that Muslims do not participate in the official garba events. The outfit also said Hindu organisations would constitute own intelligence teams to keep track of Muslims getting into garba events.
“Garba organisers and the state government should ensure this. Otherwise, the VHP will initiate direct action against Muslims,” VHP guidance unit leader Mahant Akhileshwardas said.
He said that the VHP would object to entry of Muslims into garba venues in a “democratic manner” and carry out state-wide awareness drive to explain why they should not be allowed at venues where the Hindu religious festivals are celebrated. State VHP general secretary Ranchhod Bharwad said if Muslim youth wished to participate in garba events, they should first convert to Hinduism.
Posted by Seema Alfred Adler
on September 24, 2014. Filed under Editorial
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