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'Bhagwan Shiva' first messenger of Muslims, says Deobandi Mufti
Like Chinese in China, Americans in America all Muslims are Hindus, there is no harm in accepting this fact, he says; receives flak
Friday February 20, 2015 7:36 AM, ummid.com & Agencies

Mufti Mohammad Ilyas, who claims to a functionary of Jamiat-e-Ulema Hind, stirred a controversy Thursday by stating that Hindu Lord 'Bhagwan Shiva' was the first messenger of Muslims and like Chinese in China and Americans in America all Muslims are Hindus and there was no harm in accepting this fact.

Mufti Ilyas

Mufti Ilyas elaborated that Muslims were also followers of Sanatan Dharma and "have no reservations in accepting that Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati were part of the series of a lakh and twenty four thousand prophets sent to Earth with a mission to establish humanity, true religion and God's rule in the world".

He said he thought there was nothing objectionable or wrong about referring to Indian Muslims as Hindus, since Muslims from India are called 'Hindi' in Arabian countries.

"We Indian Muslims are followers of Islam. We believe in 'Allah', but we are, traditionally, 'Hindus'," he said.

"We are not opposed to declaring India a Hindu country. The way population residing in China and Japan are called Chinese and Japanese respectively, we are called Hindustani," he added.

Wily nily, Mufti Ilyas has only toed the line taken by the saffron brigade, voiced in so many words recently by RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat. The statement, beamed on TV channels all through the day, has come as a virtual bolt from the blue for Islamic clerics, already screaming blue murder.

His statement was slammed by Muslim leaders and Jamiat-e-Ulema said Mufti Ilyas has no association with the organisation.

"Mufti Ilyas has no association with the Jamiat-e-Ulema Hind", Gulzar Azmi, office secretary of the Jamiat said.

"This is totally ridiculous," nonagenarian Hashim Ansari, the oldest party in the ongoing Ayodhya shrine dispute, almost bursts out before the media. "Clerics like him read the Quran but don't understand or follow it at all," he said. "In any case, Muslims don't regard the Jamiat as 'ulema'," he asserted.

Mufti Mukarram Ahmed, Imam of Fatehpuri Masjid, also rejected Iliyas's statements.

"What he has said, is totally wrong and unacceptable. It's nowhere written in our holy book. This could be his political statement," Mukarram said. "We rever only the 'nabis' (Prophets) mentioned in the Quran," he added.

Vice-president of the All India Muslim Personal Law Board and much-respected Shia cleric Maulana Kalbe Sadiq said, "Mufti Ilyas should first learn the basics of both Hinduism and Islam. Clerics should not make such irresponsible statments about religion."

On the other hand, prominent Hindu priests of Ayodhya have welcomed the statement. "What the Mufti has said is backed by facts. It's recorded in our scriptures and mythology," says Mahant Janmejaya Sharan.

"Mufti Iliyas is right. This should be welcomed by Muslims, too. It will bring us together like brothers," says Mahant Satyendra Das, chief priest of the disputed Ram temple in Ayodhya.

Mufti Iliyas was in Ayodhya on Thursday as part of a delegation of the Jamiat Ulema to urge saints to participate in a conference on communal harmony on February 27 in Balrampur (east UP). Reportedly, the conference could also consider a motion on the subject of Hindus and Muslims being the children of the same set of parents.




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