Lyricist Javed Akhtar's security stepped up

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Mumbai, May 16 (ANI): Lyricist and Rajya Sabha member Javed Akhtar has been provided round-the-clock security following e-mail threats received by him for criticizing a fatwa against working women during a television debate.

"We have provided security to Javed Akhtar by posting armed guards at his house. The guards would follow him wherever he goes," a police official said.

Akhtar has been receiving threat mails after he commented on the fatwa issued by Islamic seminary Darul Uloom Deoband.

An email received by him on May 12 had said "your countdown has begun".

On Friday, Akhtar had lodged a complaint with the police.

The Mumbai Police Cyber Cell and Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS) are probing the e-mail threat received by Akhtar.

Reacting to the threat, Akhtar said, "I would not be restricted in movement or speech. I have always stood up for what I think is right and I would continue to do so".

On Tuesday, the Darul Uloom Deoband, in a Talibanesque fatwa, decreed that it is "haram" and illegal according to the Sharia for a family to accept a woman's earnings.

Clerics at the largest Sunni Muslim seminary after Cairo's Al-Azhar said the decree flowed from the fact that the Sharia prohibited proximity of men and women at the workplace.

The e-mail taunted Akhtar, claiming he is a Muslim only in name and is actually a Jewish agent.

Reportedly, the e-mail signed by Aneesul Islam, accuses Akhtar of hurting Muslim sentiments with his comments.

The email said Akhtar could ignore the Ulema's orders if he wished, but he should not have said the fatwa was irrelevant.(ANI)

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