Friday, March 21, 2008

Introspection on Deoband Declaration

Introspection on Deoband Declaration
Tue, 2008-03-04 03:10
By M. Burhanuddin Qasmi

It is imperative to see that even some hard core BJP sevaks are speaking about organizing debate on mutual understanding among Hindus and Muslims in India after the Anti-Terrorism Deoband Conference on 25 February. It is also appreciable that national and international media both print and electronic are taking the 'Deoband Declaration' with the same letter and spirit that the issue actually deserved.

The discussions on various web sites and TV talks where a few participants have understandably put their views honestly are encouraging. Some of the arguments like what more the Darul Uloom can do while countering terrorism and why Deoband was organizing the conference this late in some newspapers and web blogs have also been repeated in the conference itself by the speakers and enshrined in the 'Deoband Declaration', where this writer was present as participant as well as a member while preparing the declaration.

What disturbing common peace loving Muslims of India is why the mainstream media or for that matter socio-political analysts in general are not asking write wing Hindu political parties— Shiv Sena, BJP and extremist organizations like VHP, RSS and Bajrang Dal to introspect honestly about their role in the national integration and communal harmony in India. Why a debate is not being conducted to precisely define what exactly terrorism is? If the activities of ULFA, Maoist, Naxalite and LTTE come under the universal definition of terrorism, if yes, then why a word 'Muslim' is prefixed while describing some terrorists and others are just known by the organizations they belong to?

Very recently Tamilnadu police have unfolded a terrorist plot of Privar activists and arrested three persons-- S Ravi Pandian (42), S Kumar (28} and V Narayana Sharma (26), all Sangh Parivar activists, for bomb blasts in the bus stop and RSS office at Tenkasi, a busy town in Tirunelveli District of Tamil Nadu, where at least six persons were killed. The list is long from Nanded, Jhalna, Nagpur to Jama Masjid Delhi, Malegaon and Makkah Masjid Hyderabad where write wing political interest is suspect to be behind blasts and fair, transparent investigation is awaited.

While making a trustworthy peaceful society police has a vital role to play but unfortunately it is here India is in making gulf between communities. At a Mumbai flyover a school boy was caught for rough driving, the police officer asks for driving license and when he had the license in hand where a Muslim name was inscribed in it he gores over the boy saying 'kidar ko bomb phorna hain' (where are you going to drop the bomb)? The boy angrily responses what rubbish are you talking about sir? The officer replies 'saly pher itna speed se keyu bhaga raha hain?' (Bullshit (sic) then why are you driving this fast?)

We all must abide by the law and make our policing physically transparent to punish all the criminals whosoever or whatever political party or organization he may belong to and protect all innocent peoples from the least humiliation, was also one of the clear and underlined messages that Deoband declaration wanted to convey to the world. It is the execution of justice which ensures trust of a person on the constitution of a country and the trust leads to love and longing with the nation. You cannot create patriot, they are born out of longing and belong to the system from within, argues the scholars at the Deoband conference.

Maulana Arshad Madni, Dean in Darul Uloom Deoband went a little far and demanded to the government of India for visible equal justice for all. He said "either you declare India a Hindu Rashtra or give all citizens equal justice" he claimed injustice has gradually crossed all limit.

Let us unite to work to instill trust in us and begin every investigation from an equal point without being pre-occupied by one sided notions, is the voice in Muslims streets. Some times real culprits are moving around freely and instead innocents are behind the bar for no wrong of their own, fueling further terror causes.

The theme of the Deoband conference is 'terrorism' is deplorable, unacceptable in any form whatsoever, anywhere in the world; and it belongs to no religion. Terrorism is no body's monopoly— Mahatma Gandhi, two Indian Prime Ministers, Sri Lankan President, two US presidents were assassinated by terrorists, not Muslims, thus the idea 'every Muslims may not be terrorist but every terrorist is a Muslim' is sic and factually wrong.

M. Burhanuddin Qasmi is editor of Eastern Crescent, a Deoband alumnus and director of Mumbai based Markazul Ma'arif Education and Research Centre.

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quraan burning

Planned Muslim Response to Qur'an Burning by Pastor Jones on September 11 in Mulberry, Florida

August 19, 2013| Dallas, Texas

Mike Ghouse
Text/Talk: (214) 325-1916

Mirza A Beg
(205) 454-8797


We as Muslims plan to respond to pastor Terry Jones' planned burning of 3000 copies of Quran on September 11, 2013 in positive terms.

Our response - we will reclaim the standard of behavior practiced by the Prophet concerning “scurrilous and hostile criticism of the Qur’an” (Muhammad Asad Translation Note 31, verse 41:34). It was "To overcome evil with good is good, and to resist evil by evil is evil." It is also strongly enjoined in the Qur’an in the same verse 41:34, “Good and evil deeds are not equal. Repel evil with what is better; then you will see that one who was once your enemy has become your dearest friend.”

God willing Muslims will follow the divine guidance and pray for the restoration of Goodwill, and on that day many Muslim organizations will go on a “blood drive” to save lives and serve humanity with kindness.

We invite fellow Americans of all faiths, races, and ethnicities to join us to rededicate the pledge, “One nation under God”, and to build a cohesive America where no American has to live in apprehension, discomfort or fear of fellow Americans. This event is a substitute for our 10th Annual Unity Day Celebration ( held in Dallas, but now it will be at Mulberry, Florida.

Unwittingly Pastor Jones has done us a favor by invigorating us by his decision to burn nearly 3000 copies Quran on September 11, 2013. Obviously he is not satisfied by the notoriety he garnered by burning one Qur'an last year.

As Muslims and citizens we honor the free speech guaranteed in our constitution. We have no intentions to criticize, condemn or oppose Pastor Terry Jones' freedom of expression. Instead, we will be donating blood and praying for goodness to permeate in our society.

We plan to follow Jesus Christ (pbuh), a revered prophet in Islam as well as Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) – that of mitigating the conflicts and nurturing good will for the common good of the society.

We hope, this event and the message will remind Muslims elsewhere in the world as well, that violence is not the way. Muslims, who react violently to senseless provocation, should realize that, violence causes more violence, and besmirches the name of the religion that we hold so dear. We believe that Prophet Muhammad was a mercy to the mankind, and we ought to practice what we believe and preach. We must not insult Islam by the negative reactions of a few.

We can only hope it will bring about a change in the attitude of the followers of Pastor Jones, and in the behavior of those Muslims who reacted violently the last time Pastor sought notoriety – We hope this small step towards a bridge to peaceful coexistence would propel us towards building a cohesive society.

Like most Americans a majority of Muslims quietly go about their own business, but it is time to speak up and take positive action instead of negative reaction. May this message of peace and goodwill reverberate and reach many shores.

Lastly, we appreciate the Citizens of Mulberry, Florida, Honorable Mayor George Hatch, City Commissioners, police and Fire Chiefs for handing this situation very well. This will add a ‘feather of peace’ in the City’s reputation. We hope Mulberry will be a catalyst in showing the way in handling conflict with dignity and peace.

We thank the Media for giving value to the work towards peace rather than conflict.


Thank you.


The people in Dallas are making an effort to understand and clean their own hearts first, when we are free from bias, it would be easy to share that with others. Islam teaches us in so many ways to "respect the otherness of others" and it is time we find simple practical ways of doing it.