The Shia community says that there is no influence of Iran in India as their community is extremely small. Syed Babbar Ashraf who heads the Sada-e-Sufia Hind or the Sufi voice of India says that the real agenda is the spread of Wahabism.
In this interview with OneIndia, Syed Babar Ashraf who has organized several anti Wahabi rallies says that what the Saudis intend to do is make this battle as a Wahabi vs the rest of the world.
The wikileaks cables suggested that Saudi Arabia wanted to match Iran's influence of India. How much does Iran influence the Sufis in India?
I don't think there is any influence of Iran on the Sufi Muslims in India. We are in minority here and a majority of the Muslims belong to the Sunni community. Even if we want to support Iran, all we can extend is moral support and nothing more than that. With such a small population, Iran would not be trying to have any influence over India.
What is the concern that the Saudis have raised?
The Saudis have only one agenda in mind. They want to ensure that every Sunni Muslim follows Wahabism. The only agenda is to impose the Wahabi culture in India and they are making excuses quoting the influence of Iran.
This is not a Shia vs Sunni war. This is about imposing Wahabism in as many places are possible.
Do you a major influence of Wahabism in India?
The Saudis are trying to impose Wahabism right from Kashmir to Kanyakumari. There are 8 different forums which finance the implentation of Wahabism in India. The main intention of imposing Wahabism is to break the unity among the Indian Muslims and create a conflict zone.
What is the modus operandi followed while imposing Wahabism?
It is pretty much a similar agenda which a super power has. These persons target areas where there is high poverty and illiteracy. The Wahabis have a lot of money with them and they try and buy out people.
They claim that they have come to India to dole out charity to the poor and needy. More than Mosques, they try and spread the ideology in universities. In almost all universities catering to Muslims, the Wahabis have been trying to stamp their authority.
Is there an Iran influence in India?
There is no influence of Iran over the Shia Muslims in India. The Shia community constitutes only 5 per cent of the Muslim population and the Sunnis are in majority.
Shias are found in pockets of Lucknow and Hyderabad and basically are in no position to have any influence and neither will any country trying influencing us. All we can do is give moral support and fight against Wahabism as it is aiming at dividing the Muslims and also threatening the peace of India.
Has Saudi restricted its Wahabi influence only to India?
The Saudis have various ways to spreading Wahabi influence. In some nations they will do it in the name of the al-Qaeda or ISIS while in others they would send their preachers and target through charity work as I earlier pointed out.
The Saudis want to be a legitimate power in every part of the world and they feel they can become that only with the spread of Wahabism. They are active in India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Indonesia just to name a few countries. Basically it is all about control.
Your thoughts on the Kuwait Mosque attack targeted at Shia Muslims?
This is nothing but an attempt to spread extremism and hatred. They want to create a rift between the Sunnis and Shias over there.
Is Wahabism an ideological war on the world?
Yes it is all about ideology. Wahabism is officially allowed only in Saudi and Qatar. They want to spread this ideology to as many parts of the world and in this way the Saudis feel that they can ensure dominance.