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Hand out stringent punishment to 26/11 perpetrators: Sufi body

Rakhi Chakrabarty,TNN | Nov 27, 2011, 01.40 AM IST NEW DELHI: The All India Ulama and Mashaikh Board (AIUMB), a leading body of Sunni Sufi Muslims, d

Rakhi Chakrabarty,TNN | Nov 27, 2011, 01.40 AM ISTTOI

NEW DELHI: The All India Ulama and Mashaikh Board (AIUMB), a leading body of Sunni Sufi Muslims, demanded stringent punishment for the 26/11 accused at a conference in Bareilly on Saturday.

The conference coincided with the third anniversary of the 26/11 attack. AIUMB general secretary Maulana Syed Mohammad Ashraf Kichhouchhwi said, “Each on of us must be a vigilant. If you see anyone involved in any kind of illegal activities in your mohalla, it is your duty to inform the police,” the Maulana told a large gathering at Bareilly. The law enforcement agencies alone cannot root out terrorism.

He said, “The Holy Quran says if you have killed one innocent person, then you have killed all of humanity. The 26/11 accused must be given harshest punishment as per the law so that it serves as a deterrent. It should send a strong message to terrorists that our law is not weak.”

In a memorandum submitted to the President and the Prime Minister, the AIUMB asked the government “not to appoint any Wahabi (Deobandi/Nadwi/Salafi/AhleHadith) as a chairman, CEO, Waqf member or manager of the Sunni Waqf”. “They are utilizing Waqf properties to propagate Wahabism, which preaches hate and intolerance and now has become threat to the country’s secular fabric,” the Maulana said.

Speakers at the conference asserted that Sufi khanquahs don’t discriminate between people. “There is no scope of any ‘ism’ here. The khanquahs don’t differentiate between “us” and “them” or Muslims and non-Muslims. For centuries, we have been promoting communal harmony and peace,” said Syed Babar Ashraf, AIUMB spokesperson.

Sufi leaders stressed on the need to uplift the Muslims through education and employment.

The AIUMB leaders demanded implementation of the Sachar Committee recommendations and reservations for Muslims as prescribed in the Ranganath Mishra Commission Report. “Reservations for Muslims must not be less than 10%,” said Babar Ashraf.

AIUMB also sought political reservation to ensure due representation of Muslims in politics.

AIUMB spokesperson said the government should allocate land to Muslim education societies at a subsidized rate /free of cost to set up education institutions. “Muslims residential schools and intermediate colleges with quality teachers and infrastructure should be set up. There should be at least one girls’ school/college in every subdivision and not less than three in each Muslim majority district,” he said.