Jamaat leadership said banning any organization which strictly follows the law should be seen as ‘undemocratic’ and ‘fascist’ move
ABDUL BARI MASOUD | Caravan Daily
NEW DELHI — In the wake of media reports that the BJP-led government at the Center is mulling a ban on Kerala-based social organization Popular Front of India (PFI), the largest Muslim group, the Jamaat-e-Islami Hind (JIH) on Saturday expressed deep concern on the issue. It alleged that the present government has been targeting Muslim organizations on one pretext or the other since it came to power. It stoutly opposed any move to proscribe the PIF saying it has been working under the parameters of the Constitution and adhering to the rule of law.
Addressing a press conference here, Jamaat leadership said banning any organization which strictly follows the law should be seen as “undemocratic” and “fascist” move. In response to a question, Muhammad Salim Engineer, secretary-general, the JIH said “we are against this policy of banning organizations as it is undemocratic and fascist in nature. If anybody is found breaking the law then strict action must be taken against the concerned individual but the banning of organizations is not the right thing in a democracy.’’
Maulana Syed Jalaluddin Umari, President JIH, also slammed the government saying it must desist from any such move.
we are against this policy of banning organizations as it is undemocratic and fascist in nature. If anybody is found breaking the law then strict action must be taken against the concerned individual but the banning of organizations is not the right thing in a democracy.
“The possible ban on the PFI is not an election issue as the organization has been facing a threat of ban since the time of previous UPA government,” said Umari. The PFI matter is before the court and so we would not be able to say much on it, Maulana Umari said.
“It is worth to mention that the Modi government declared world-known Islamic preacher Dr. Zakir Naik’s Islamic Research Foundation as a proscribed organization. First BJP-led-NDA government had banned the Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) in 2001 and till date, its case has not been heard by the Supreme Court. While the government did not ban any Hindu group such Abhinava Bharat or Sanatan Sanstha allegedly involved in terror activities and the then Maharashtra government had recommended a ban on it to the Center,” said the JIH.
On a question related to singing Vande Mataram, Maulana Nusrat Ali, vice-president JIH said that there is a consensus among Muslims that singing Vande Mataram is objectionable.
However, he clarified that the case of the national anthem is different and its singing has no issues.
“However Jamaat is against this mentality of suspecting the patriotism of certain sections of the minority community by asking them to sing the national anthem. We condemn the targeting of Muslim religious seminaries (madrassas) by forcing them to recite the national anthem to prove their patriotism,” he added.
On the failing Indian economy, he added, “Jamaat is deeply concerned about the Indian economy which seems to be in an unprecedented trouble. India’s GDP has come down to 5.7% from around 7% in the last three years. The hurried and ill-advised demonetisation scheme has not yielded its intended results; however, it has negatively impacted the Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) sector, and hurt the rural economy as well.
Jamaat leaders also alleged that the government is also failing in its duty to control the growing lawlessness in the country by rogue and anti-social elements demanding that the Central government and the state governments must take stern measures to curb incidents of lawlessness.
On the controversy over the Rohingya Muslim refugees in India, Jamaat leadership said India should make a comprehensive law in dealing with refugee problems.