I don't want symbolism, I want work, says Muslim cleric Madani

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Narendra Modi
New Delhi, April 21: Finally, a leader from Muslim community has come forward in support of BJP's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi in the skull cap issue.

Modi has been criticised for refusing to wear skull cap, a religious symbol of Muslims.

Muslim cleric Maulana Mehmood Madani on Monday said that Modi should not wear the cap for symbolic purposes as many politicians have been using the symbolic act to make a fool of Muslims.

"If you ask me to put a tilak, I won't agree, not at all. And that doesn't make me a bad person. I don't find not wearing skull cap as bad. I say that those who wear the cap fool Muslims. I want to tell them with folded hands not to make a fool of us," Maulana Madani said.

"If you ask me to put a tilak, I won't agree.That doesn't make me a bad person"

 

"He (Modi) should not wear the skull cap. Nobody should. It is only a symbolic thing and I don't want symbolism," he added.

The whole controversy began when Modi, in a television interview last week, said that he will not wear skull caps just to appease someone.

"Does Sonia Gandhi wear a skull cap?" he asked, adding that he would do anything to protect the rights of the minorities but would not make symbolic gestures for appeasement.

The Congress slammed Modi and said this was a clear and "unmistakable signal" of his "bias and bigotry" against Muslims.

"That is the only headgear he refuses to wear. He wore all kinds of outlandish headgears including one with a dead bird of an endangered specie. He wore the headgear of Nagaland, turban and saafa," Congress leader Shashi Tharoor said.

"By not wearing the skull cap, he is sending an unmistakable signal to his hardcore supporters that he will not cater to the needs of this community. He never misses an opportunity to signal his bias and bigotry to the nation," Tharoor added.

The BJP has stood behind Modi, with party leader Shahnawaz Hussain saying, "Skull cap is not for politics. It's for worshipping but many leaders use topi (cap) for politics. Woh Musalmanon ko topi pehnate hain (They only fool the Muslims). The Hindus and Muslims must respect each other's sentiments. The BJP does not discriminate between Hindus and Muslims. We see all as equal."

Further, Madani said, "There is a view about him (Modi) that he is not secular. It may be wrong but that is the view and I also agree with the view. The identity attached to him is that of destruction. If he talks about development and succeeds in implementing then he will be worthy of praise. It is good that he is appearing secular and not saying a single communal word but that is the strength of this country. Khuda kare ki dil badal gaya ho. It will be a good thing".

Oneindia News

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