Bengaluru, Nov 29: The prominent Sunni Muslim leader Kanthapuram A P Aboobacker Musliyar on Saturday, Nov 28, irked progressive populace, resultantly inviting razor-headed salvos.
A P Aboobacker stated in a program convened by Sunni Student Federation (SSF) in Kozihikode district of Kerala, "the mulishness that boy and girl sit at a same bench while studying in schools is an indirect attack targeted to derail Islam and its culture. Gender equality is not Islamic or humane."
Aboobacker went on claiming that "women's role is limited to delivering babies and it (gender equality) is not going to be materialised." He added the world is controlled by men. Women cannot withstand major crisis and they even lack courage to perform major surgeries including open heart procedure.
According to sources in the A P Sunni Muslim group, many religious leaders have silently patted the back of Aboobacker for issuing the statement that is concerning the Islam in the era of modernisation. However, on the other hand, progressive Muslim leaders shot criticism at him for allegedly making incendiary statement against the sovereignty of women, enshrined in the Indian Constitution.
A journalist-cum-writer, Saheed Roomy from Kozhikode, while speaking to OneIndia said, "Musliyar is a repeated offender when it comes to speaking at public platform and commenting on Islam norms.
"Personally talking, Aboobacker is dangerously orthodox," Roomy opined, while adding that Musliyar still teaches 14th Century and he lives in that era.
He observed that Musliyar has a massive support base among Sunnis and his latest offensive wrongly influence Muslim youth in general. Roomy, the author of 'Njan Qutubuddin Ansari' (I am Qutubuddin Ansari) stressed that majority in the Sunni groups' possess anti-women traits.
Roomy, in a brief conversation was quick to recall famous 'atrocious statement stunts' of Musliyar. "Two years before Aboobacker cited reason behind the practice of polygamy in Islam community. He said since woman menstruate, a Muslim man is required to marry four women not to avoid copulation," Roomy laughed. And he questioned the sanity of Musliyar who made this statement to a private news channel in Kerala.
This is not the only example, Musliyar has a history of making such uncivilised remarks in the modernising world. "Musliyar along with his powerful A P Sunni group kicked off a campaign to oppose 50% reservation scheme in the local body elections in Kerala," Roomy informed.
While hitting out at Musliyar, Roomy said the man is an anti-modernisation and such person should be cornered in order to eliminate Muslim demography from the dogmatic state. He also opined participation of women in education, politics, and other professional walks of life is a need of the hour.
The Karnataka state Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI) president Muneer Katipalla opined to OneIndia, "while already tag of intolerance is attached to the Islam community, this 'idiotic' statement further hampers modernisation of Islam.
Katipalla, sharply observed that at a time where Islam community looked at in a 'bad shape' globally, this statement lends tool to anti-Islam people to defame the Islam. "The statement of Musliyar itself defames Islam in the modern age," Katipalla said.
He further added, "Musliyar should read the political history of Pakistan and Bangladesh. In a country (Pakistan) that consists of Muslim fundamentalists as majority, Benazir Bhutto held the helm. In Bangladesh where situation is not different Sheikh Hasina is leading the country. What Musliyar would say for this development that is so called anti-Islam, he questioned.
Katipalla said that Muslim women are readily accepting mordenisation and are making all-out-effort to put themselves into mainstream. In India, due to Indian Constitution, many Muslim women were able to participate in social, political and professional discourses.
'Replace nonsensical oral Talaq
A progressive erudite and noted Kannada novelist Sara Abubakar, while exclusively talking to OneIndia said that she has no connections to the statements of Musliyar and she likes to avoid commenting on the issue as it fuels more popularity to a man who has to be much neglected by the media.
However, when OneIndia requested to speak on oral Talaq practiced in the community, she agreed to talk on the subject. "I personally oppose this system and a separate law needs to be enforced to replace nonsensical oral Talaq," she viewed.
The whole scenario changed for Muslim women after Shah Banu Begum case. Even in 1937, Muslim women were legally entitled to get compensation from the divorcing husband. After Shah Banu Begum case surfaced in 1978, her husband, Mohammad Ahmed Khan argued for dropping compensation clause in the law. Many Muslim clergies and political leaders came to the support of Khan, Sara recalled.
Abubakar rued that unfortunately Rajiv Gandhi emerged with the amendment depriving natural right for the women. She suggested to read a book 'Jihad-e-Teen-Talaq' to learn the sequence of events and struggle against fresh amendment. The book is authored by Syed Mehboob Shah and he lead the fight against Rajiv's move.
Sara advised that there are good aspects in Islam divorce law and other divorce laws. All good has to be put together to make a new law that would restore Muslim women's rights.