Thursday, August 18, 2022

Adding fuel to the fire

As India continues to be confronted by the dangers of religious polarisation and too little being done to prevent the spread of communal hatred, the beheading on June 28 of a tailor in Udaipur, Rajasthan by two terrorists, has only given a handle to forces inimical to communal harmony. Those involved in the June 28 incident at Udaipur belong to two communities. Kanhaiya Lal age 48 was from the Hindu community and the two accused persons Ghouse Mohammad and Riyaz Akhtari are from the Muslim community. According to reports, the victim had reportedly shared a video post supporting the controversial remarks by Nupur Sharma, now suspended BJP spokesperson against Islam’s founder and prophet Mohammad. According to other reports, the video was posted from Kanhaiya Lal’s mobile but it was learnt that the victim was ignorant about video posting but that it was actually done by one of his family members. After the video was posted, family members said the victim was arrested by police on charges of inciting communal hatred. A video was then posted by the two accused who threatened to kill Kanhaiya Lal for the video post. The victim complained to police on June 15, but the police, instead of taking action against the two, acted like peacemakers and reportedly helped to bring a compromise. Kanhaiya Lal did not open his shop for six days fearing for his life. However, when he reopened his shop on Tuesday, the two terrorists went into the shop in the pretext of stitching their clothes. When Kanhaiya Lal began measuring, suddenly one of them(identified as Riyaz Akhtari); attacked the victim with a giant cleaver and beheaded him. The other (identified as Ghouse Mohammad) filmed the entire murder in gory detail. After the horrific beheading, the two attempted to flee but were intercepted by police. According to police, Ghouse Mohammad had been Pakistan for some kind of indoctrination with the Karachi-headquartered missionary group Dawat-e-Islami. The group has been involved with a series of murders. The beheading was gory and most chilling and the act of the two terrorists will only serve to justify communal violence against Muslims in India. The Udaipur killing is the by product of radical Islam of which the entire world has experienced. Anyone, including a Muslim, can attract fatwa and be targeted for blasphemy. The chilling manner in which Kanhaiya Lal was beheaded and then after the dastardly deed, the two terrorists lording over their act by posting a video is beyond tolerance. A religion that claims as being one of the most peaceful, seems to have no answer to the most violent and brutal forms of reprisals carried out as fatwa or jihad. The Shahi Imam of Jama Masjid in Delhi condemned the killing and called it an act of cowardice. The Imam also said that the heinous murder was an act against Islam and that Islam was the religion of peace and tranquillity. Islamic organizations and Masjid Imams also said that the murder was a huge hammer on humanity. These lines have been echoed by other Muslim leaders. However none of the Muslim religious organisations or well known leaders like Assad uddin Owaisi questioned the existence or practice of the medieval edicts such as fatwa and jihad, which are used to promote terrorism globally in the name of the religion.

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