Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Why was there never a black Prophet !!! - Sh Omar Suleiman

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

‘A disaster in the making’: Pakistan’s population surges to 207.7 million

For years, Pakistan’s soaring population growth has been evident in increasingly crowded schools, clinics and poor communities across this vast, Muslim-majority nation. But until two weeks ago, no one knew just how serious the problem was. Now they do. 

Preliminary results from a new national census — the first conducted since 1998 — show that the population has grown by 57 percent since then, reaching 207.7 million and making Pakistan the world’s fifth-most-populous country, surpassing Brazil and ranking behind China, India, the United States and Indonesia. The annual birthrate, while gradually declining, is still alarmingly high. At 22 births per 1,000 people, it is on a par with Bolivia and Haiti, and among the highest outside Africa. 
“The exploding population bomb has put the entire country’s future in jeopardy,” columnist Zahid Hussain wrote in the Dawn newspaper recently. With 60 percent of the population younger than 30, nearly a third of Pakistanis living in poverty and only 58 percent literate, he added, “this is a disaster in the making.”

Saturday, 16 September 2017

Islam and Muslims in Japan

Contrary to popular belief, Islam in Japan is growing, mainly due to indegeneous Japanese people reverting to Islam.

Professor Tanada from the Faculty of Human Sciences, Waseda University says the following:
Japan, which is also a Muslim-minority country, also experienced a growth in Muslim population during the bubble economy. Based on the data of 2016, there are currently approximately 120,000 Muslims from overseas and 10,000 Japanese Muslims living in Japan. Although most Muslims in Japan lives in the three major metropolitans areas of Japan (Greater Tokyo Area, Chukyo Metropolitan Area and Kinki Region), the Muslim network has never ceased expanding throughout Japan.

Since the beginning of 1990s, there has been increasing number of mosques being built across the Japanese archipelago, including Hokkaido and Okinawa prefectures. Even though there are currently over 90 mosques throughout Japan, most Japanese are not aware of it. Nevertheless, as there is an increasing number of movements and initiatives to promote understanding in Islam and Muslims in recent years, more and more mosques are accepting tours and organizing events for Japanese to participate.

It is estimated that the population of Muslims will continue to grow in Europe and Japan, however, the growth does not only lies in the number of Muslim immigrants. In countries like England, half the population of the Muslim community are born and raised in these countries. Even in Japan, about half of the permanent Muslim residences have settled down and build a family, suggesting that Japan will see an increase in the number of second and third generation Muslims in the near future. These Muslims are going to be “hybrid Muslims” that will be exposed to diverse cultural background. They will be the key people to bridging the local community with the Muslim community. I hope that when we meet them in the near future, we will be able to learn and work together in harmony.

TRT world did a feature on Tokyo Mosque Iftar here. The following is a video from that feature

Learn more about Islam and Muslims in Japan at Islam Awareness Homepage: Japan

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

‘It only takes one terrorist’: the Buddhist monk who reviles Myanmar’s Muslims

Ashin Wirathu
Islam represents only 5% of Myanmar’s population of 54 million, but nationalists like Wirathu are pushing the idea that the faith puts Buddhism, and the very essence of Myanmar, in jeopardy. He claims the 1 million Rohingya Muslims living in precarious conditions in his country – described by human rights agencies as the most persecuted people on Earth – “don’t exist”.
“It only takes one terrorist to be amongst them,” he says. “Look at what has happened in the west. I do not want that to happen in my country. All I am doing is warning people to beware.”
Wirathu adds that if Donald Trump or Nigel Farage need some advice he will happily share his ideas. These include infiltrating the Facebook pages of Muslim groups, getting all Islamic schools to record their lessons, and government surveillance of internet activity, including emails. Wirathu claims he has his own army of individuals screening the net in Myanmar.
On the well-documented situation of the Rohingya in Rakhine state – where people have been left without access to medicines, aid, and basic human necessities such as clean water, sanitation and food – Wirathu is dismissive. The Rohingya have been mostly couped up in camps since the 2012 violence, and the silence of Myanmar’s leader Aung San Suu Kyi and her National League for Democracy on their plight has attracted growing criticism.
Wirathu rejects the stateless Rohingya as illegal immigrants, a view echoed by the government. He will only discuss them if the description “Bangladeshis” is used, and even then Wirashu says the situation is not as it is portrayed.
“If it is true what [outsiders say], then I would offer help but I have visited the camps on many occasions. The aid agencies are refused access because they are using the refugees to fill their own pockets. Bangladeshis are posing for the media. They are not starving. They have so much food that they are selling it on in their shops – stealing even from their own.”
On the allegations that women have been abused and raped by the military, he laughed: “Impossible. Their bodies are too disgusting.”
There have been calls outside Myanmar for Aung San Suu Kyi to return her Nobel peace prize for her failure to tackle the situation with the refugees, which has broken her own promises on human rights.

Monday, 11 September 2017

Deeds after death?

Image result for muslim grave

Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “When the human being dies, his deeds come to an end except for three: ongoing charity, beneficial knowledge, or a righteous child who prays for him.” (Muslim)

The more I think about this, and face the daily challenges of fatherhood the more I realize the last of the three mentioned here is the most difficult to attain.

Sunday, 10 September 2017

Central African Republic (CAR), DRC & Congo-Brazzaville

The Central African Republic (CAR) descended into a crisis after President Francoise Bozize was overthrown in a coup. The ongoing tensions between political factions soon became a religious one, when ordinary Muslims and Christians turned on each other as the violence escalated across the country. Thousands have been killed and almost a quarter of the population displaced in a conflict that is fast spiralling out of control. Al Jazeera's Hyder Abbasi explains the story in 60 seconds.

World's most neglected conflict rages on in the CAR

Violence in the Central African Republic has fallen from the world's radar, but that does not mean the conflict is over.

A comprehensive new report by the UN, released this week, makes the extent of the devastation abundantly clear. It should draw urgently needed attention to this bloody crisis and spur action to help it end.

The 369-page "Mapping Report" documents serious violations of human rights and international humanitarian law from 2003 to 2015, and in the Central African Republic the task was immense. An eight-member team conducted field investigations and combed through 1,200 documents. They cover 620 crimes "of the most serious gravity" committed by various parties, including village burnings, killings and rape.

UN sees early warning signs of genocide in CAR. 

UN sees early warning signs of genocide in CAR.

Renewed clashes in the Central African Republic (CAR) are early warning signs of genocide, the UN aid chief said on Monday, calling for more troops and police to beef up the UN peacekeeping mission in the strife-torn country.

Some 180,000 people have been driven from their homes this year, bringing the total number of displaced in the CAR to well over half a million, said Stephen O'Brien.

"The early warning signs of genocide are there," O'Brien told a UN meeting following his recent trip to the CAR and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

"We must act now, not pare down the UN's effort, and pray we don't live to regret it."

Muslims return to CAR to find their homes are gone

Observers warn that if land and property are not returned, there will be no peace in the Central African Republic.

M Babakir Ali cuts a lonely figure sitting on a plastic chair outside a rundown cafe in the PK5 district of Bangui.

Once the owner of five houses and 18,000 square metres of land in the Foulbe district of Pk13, on the outskirts of Bangui, capital of the Central African Republic, Ali is now reduced to a pair of jeans and a short white sleeved shirt. The thin vertical stripes are faintly visible beyond the creases. He is a refugee in his own city.

"I left for Chad in January 2014 because of what happened on the streets of Bangui," Ali says.

Ali says he watched as bodies of young Muslim men were dragged through the streets of the capital and then piled at a local mosque in what was to signal the changing fortunes for Muslims in the country.

He was right.

In early January, Muslims in the PK5, PK12, PK13 districts of Bangui were hunted down, mutilated, burned alive and left on the streets. Muslims in the towns of Bossangoa, Bozoum, Bouca, Yaloke, Mbaiki, Bossembele and others also fled, as Anti-balaka embarked on a reign of terror across the northwest and southwestern regions.

Ali gathered his family, and fled to neighbouring Chad, too.

With the unrest in Bangui lifting in 2016 as the country neared elections, he decided to come home.

But he knew he would face a new struggle on his return.

"I knew my houses and my land, that everything had been taken," 45-year-old Ali says. "I knew I would be coming back to nothing."

Ali speaks in short and abrupt sentences. The already battered plastic chair bends and shifts with his every gesture. There is a calm dissonance in his moist, jaundiced eyes even as he explains that his property was sold to a third party by a local chief.

"I am not the only one. So many from my district have returned, and have nowhere to go," Ali says, looking away.

More information about the situation in Central African Republic (CAR) here:


Democratic Replublic of the Congo (DRC) violence displaces 3.8 million: UN

Senior UNHRC official says the number of people displaced in the country has nearly doubled in six months.

The number of people displaced by conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo has nearly doubled in the past six months to 3.8 million, according to a UN official.

George Okoth-Obbo, the number two official at the UN's refugee agency (UNHCR), said food and clothing was needed for the 1.4 million in the volatile Kasai region who have fled their homes in violence that has killed more than 3,000 people.

"Immediate protection" was required, he told AFP news agency on the last day of a three-day visit to the country, in particular for children "who are sleeping in conditions that are difficult to imagine".

According to the UN's Okoth-Obbo, about 33,000 Congolese have fled the region for Angola, and "the conditions today in Kasai are such that we cannot encourage or promote the return of refugees".

Okoth-Obbo added that the country is also having to cope with the arrival of about 500,000 refugees fleeing fighting in Burundi, Rwanda, South Sudan and the Central African Republic - where about 60,000 people have fled to Congo this year.

UN: Millions of people face acute hunger in DRC

UN food agencies say number of people in need of urgent humanitarian assistance surged by 30 percent in a year in DRC.

About 7.7 million people are on the verge of starvation in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), a 30 percent increase since last year, according to UN food agencies.

The number of people on pre-famine levels of food insecurity and requiring urgent humanitarian assistance rose from 5.9 million to 7.7 million between June 2016 and June 2017, the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and the World Food Programme (WFP) said on Monday.

One in 10 people living in rural areas suffers from acute hunger, while chronic malnutrition affects 43 per cent of children under five years, the FAO report said.

Claude Jibidar, director of WFP's operations in DRC, said on Monday that the situation was especially dire in the diamond-rich central Kasai region where a revolt has been raging for the past year, with both government and fighters accused of atrocities.

"Food security and nutrition ... are deteriorating in many parts of DRC, but nowhere is the situation more alarming than in Kasai," he said.

According to the FAO report, farmers have been unable to plant their crops in Kasai for the past two seasons because of fighting that has seen their villages and fields pillaged.

An estimated 1.4 million people in Kasai and in the eastern province of Tanganyika had been forced to flee their homes this year, it said.

A steady flow of refugees from neighbouring countries and a spread of fall armyworm infestations are also putting a strain on resources, according to the report.

"The situation is set to get worse if urgent support does not come in time," said Alexis Bonte, the FAO's representative in the DRC.

"Farmers, especially those displaced - majority women and children - desperately need urgent food aid but also means to sustain themselves, such as tools and seeds so that they can resume farming."

Conflicts have displaced about 3.7 million people within the country, according to FAO.

More information about Islam and Muslims in Zaire (Democratic Republic of the Congo) here:


For generations, immigrants from other African countries have comprised a significant minority of residents in Brazzaville, capital of the Republic of Congo. These immigrants constitute several distinct “stranger” populations within Congolese society. While they play a significant role in the Congolese economy, they also encounter discrimination in their daily lives and face hostility from indigenous Congolese. Popular discourses in Brazzaville widely represent African foreigners as a malevolent presence and a threat to Congolese interests. Such discourses fit into broader conflicts over identity, belonging, and access to resources on the continent. This paper, based on ethnographic and survey research carried out in Brazzaville, examines the case of that city’s immigrants from the West African Sahel. It situates tensions between them and their hosts in the context of contemporary political and economic dynamics in post-colonial Congo, and specifically links them to exclusionary place-based identity as a political force in contemporary Africa.

For more information on Congo-Brazzaville:

Saturday, 9 September 2017

The Battle for Myanmar’s Buddhist spirit

A good video from The Guardian, UK. In Myanmar, different groups of Buddhist monks are battling with how to deal with the country’s minority Muslim population. While some advocate peace, others, such as the extremist Ma Ba Tha, are stoking up hatred and violence. The Guardian visited Myanmar to investigate how the monks’ actions are threatening to destabilise the country’s newly established democracy.

More info here.

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

Feed the poor....

Image result for feed the poor

A man asked the Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ) ‘Which deeds in Islam are the best?’ He (ﷺ) replied, ‘To feed the poor and to greet everyone, whether you know them or not.’ (Bukhari and Muslim)

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

Gang Rape and murder in Bangladesh

From Faceboook of @taqbirhuda
This woman, Rupa, was gang raped in a moving bus by 5 bus helpers near Mymensingh, Bangladesh. Because she had the audacity to scream the rapists broke her neck, killed her and threw her body out of the bus when passing a secluded area. She was on her way back home after giving a registration exam in a neighbouring city.
At one point when all passengers got down from the bus helper Shamim dragged Rupa to the back and attempted to rape her. In a state of utter helplessness, she offered Shamim all the money she had and her mobile phone and desperately pleaded to be let go. Shamim accepted her offerings but still went on to rape her. Then, two other helpers, Akram and Jahangir, also decided to join in and took turns raping her while the bus driver Habib kept on driving without a care as Rupa's horrendous ordeal unfolded.
This is almost identical to the notorious 2012 Delhi rape case which sent shockwaves around the world. Yet Rupa's horrific gang rape and murder incident is barely sending shockwaves in her own country. A few impersonal and perfunctory news-reports here and there, a few words of anger in response to them but nothing we won't eventually forget in a day or two because that's how desensitised we've become to the ever frequent phenomenon of violence against women.
She was an aspiring lawyer working for an MNC, with hopes and dreams she couldn't live to fulfil. Where is her story? Where is the nonstop coverage? Where is her photo in the leading English dailies? Where is her basic right to safety in something as ordinary and routine as bus travel? Most importantly, where is the outrage and impetus for change?

Monday, 28 August 2017

I Embrace Being Muslim, Mexican & Pakistani; I’m Better for It

I grew up waking up at 7:00 A.M. on Saturdays to the sounds of Spanish music as my mom opened my bedroom door to find my sister and I hiding under the covers in our twin beds. She would yell, “Vamos a limpiar la casa, vamos!” And boy, did we clean.
My mom was born and raised in Leon, Guanajuato, Mexico; one of the most beautiful places in the world. With the sounds of Vicente Fernandez, Alejandro Sanz, and Alejandro Fernandez in our house, it reminded me of the early days (when I was like, 5) in Mexico. It made the cleaning a little more tolerable.
Every afternoon we would get ready and head to my tio’s house where at least 60 family members would gather for pool parties. Tacos and ceviche were obvious to the eye, but so were Coronas and Pacificios in the ice chests near the bar.
We also had a Qur’an teacher come twice a week to teach us how to read, pray, etc. I began reading the Qur’an at the age of 3 or 4 and finished it by the age of 5. I still remember the look on my father’s face when I recited Surah Yasin to the entire mosque. He smiled so bright that day.
I grew up with a lot of people who were also mixed; however, a lot of people were judgmental toward my family because my mother was not “raised Muslim.”
My parents always placed a huge emphasis on religion and I always wondered why. I wondered why people looked at me different because I was not fluent in Urdu (and yes, I’m talking about the “aunties” whose daughters were fluent in Urdu.)
I could tell Rasmalay from Barfi and understand my dad when he spoke. I was even fluent in Urdu and Punjabi when I was a kid and would run outside when the airplanes would fly over our house and yell “Ja’has” to my parents in awe. Later in life, I dropped the Urdu and picked up the Spanish.
We would not get invited to many parties and as I got older and I understood why. It was because my parents were one of the first mixed-ethnic couples in our area where the wife actually converted.
Though my mother converted to Islam, she never compromised her culture. She still cooked Mexican food, listened to Spanish music, and we would go to church sometimes with our Mexican side of the family. My mom wanted us to understand that although we were Muslim, we had to respect all faiths.
Full article 

Saturday, 26 August 2017

Peace and the four Islamic sacred months

Narrated Abu Bakr: The Prophet ﷺ said: “(The division of time has turned to its original form which was current when Allah created the Heavens and the Earths. The year is of twelve months, out of which four months are sacred: Three are in succession Dhul-Qa’da, Dhul-Hijja and Muharram, and (the fourth is) Rajab of (the tribe of) Mudar which comes between Jumadi-ath-Thaniyah and Sha’ban.” - Sahih Al-Bukhari, Book of beginning of creation, Hadith: 3197

Many Muslims are unaware that there are four sacred months in the Islamic Calendar. Even during the days of Jahilliyah, the idol worshippers of Arabia knew how to respect in these months. There used to generally be no fighting and most places were peaceful.

During these sacred months, Muslims are supposed to spend every possible opportunity to please his creator and avoid from harming anyone physically, verbally or mentally.
O you who believe! Violate not the sanctity of the symbols of Allah, nor of the sacred month. - Surah Al-Maida(5), Verse 2

[Fighting in] the sacred month is for [aggression committed in] the sacred month, and for [all] violations is legal retribution. So whoever has assaulted you, then assault him in the same way that he has assaulted you. And fear Allah and know that Allah is with those who fear Him. Surah Al-Baqarah(2), Verse 194
Recently we are getting more and more news of people who are calling themselves Muslims but doing everything against Islam and Muslims. These crazy zealots, many of them subscribing to Islamic State ideology are doing everything against Islam (see here for more details).

There are many other glory hunters who may not be a part of any terrorist organization but think of themseleves as holier than others and are harming others every other day. This post is directed mainly towards these people to remind them that they are violating the sanctity of the sacred months that Allah and his Prophet talked about on many occassions.

Friday, 25 August 2017

The First Female Commander in the Modern World Was Muslim – Meet Aceh Malahayati

The history is full of women who have been doing great work the past decades. From science to fine art to extreme sport, nowadays every discipline has its female heroes. As a matter of fact there has always been ‘the first female’ in everything. Aceh was one of them.
Keumalahayati, also known as Malahayati, was the first female admiral in the world. Her story and achievements are more than just impressive; they are brave, honorable, successful and admirable. She is a role model and an inspiration for everyone.
Malahayati lived in the period of the Aceh Sultanate during the 15th and the 16th century. She was a descendant of the founder of the Sultanate of the Aceh Darussalam. In fact, one of the founders was her great great grandfather Sultan Ibrahim Ali Mughayat Syah. Her father and grandfather were both very respected admirals. She was interested in the fascinating work her father fulfilled and decided to enter the Ma’had Baitul Maqdis Military Academy after graduating from Pesantren, an Islamic boarding school. The Academy offered education in The Navy and The Ground Force department. After graduating from there she married her true love, a Navy officer candidate. Unfortunately he was killed during the Haru Bay War against Portuguese troops. Malahayati swore to take revenge for her husband.
Determined to continue her husband’s fight, she requested the Sultan to form an armada from Aceh’s widows. After his approval the armada was named the ‘Inong Bale Armada’ and Malahayati was appointed as the First Admiral. She led many different battles against the Dutch and Portuguese.
In 1599 the Dutch commanders Cornelis de Houtman and his brother Frederick de Houtman visited the Sultan to establish their trade relationship. They were welcomed peacefully but Cornelis brought a Portuguese as a translator, which was an insult against the Sultan. Many violent battles followed in which Malahayati was the lead. She succeeded to defeat the Dutch, killed Cornelis and jailed his brother for two years.
In 1600 Paulus van Caerden, who led the Dutch Navy robbed an Aceh merchant ship of its pepper and sank it. A year later Admiral Jacob van Neck and his companions introduced themselves as merchantmen to buy pepper. But after Malahayati found out that they were Dutch, they were arrested as a compensation for the previous deeds. After a few months Maurits van Oranje ordered two emissaries, Admiral Laurens Bicker and Gerard de Roy, to take a diplomatic letter of apology and some presents for the Empire of the Aceh. As a result Malahayati and the emissaries made a treaty agreement. Meanwhile she was appointed as a Troop Commander and Palace Guard. Malahayati was also involved when England entered Malacca Strait. Queen Elizabeth I had sent James Lancaster with a letter for the Sultan. After he had a negotiation with Malahayati an agreement opened the English route to Java.
An extraordinary coincidence is the way Malahayati died. She was killed during the battle against the Portuguese, just as her husband. These days many universities, hospitals, roads and Sumatran cities are named after her. Even a series, “Laksamana Keumalahayati” was made to honor her great work.
There is no doubt that Malahayati is a name to remember. She was a warrior with a will to achieve anything if she sets her mind to it.

Thursday, 24 August 2017

On sexism, son preference and female infanticide in Bangladesh

On July 30, a father in Narayanganj burned his nine-month-old female infant alive since he “wanted a son” and was enraged at the birth of a girl (“Father 'wanted son', burns baby girl alive”, The Daily Star, August 4, 2017). He poured petrol over the child when she was asleep and set her on fire. He then switched on the fan to let the fire spread and stopped the mother from helping the child or taking her to the hospital reported a leading online news site.
While it is appalling and abominable that a practice as medieval and barbaric as female infanticide still takes place in our country, it should not come as a surprise. In fact a similar incident took place only two months ago when a man from Satkhira, Khulna threw his two-week-old daughter into the pond since he too wanted a son and was disgusted by the birth of a daughter (“Father kills 15-day-old infant for being female”, Dhaka Tribune, June 9, 2017). Last year, a man from Abhayngar, Jessore poured poison into his three-month-old daughter's mouth while she was asleep because he was craving the birth of a son and could not bear having a daughter for the fourth time (“Father kills daughter”, The Independent, March 2, 2016). 
Killing new born daughters (i.e. female infanticide) is not a random, inexplicable act of violence; it is an extreme manifestation of a pre-existing and deeply sexist societal mindset known as “son preference” which still plagues a sizeable portion of our population today. A 2006 study of 850 families conducted by Promoting Human Rights Education in Bangladesh showed that 93 percent of Bangladeshi families preferred a son, viewing them as a “blessing” to the home and country, while 93 percent viewed girls as a “problem.” (“Son Preference”, Stop Violence Against Women, The Advocates for Human Rights). So it is not enough or even helpful to simply admonish the perpetrator (necessary as that may be), we must also look at the wider scheme of things and force an introspection: what socioeconomic factors cause certain people to cherish the birth of a son but loathe the birth of a daughter—sometimes loathe to the extent of killing their own flesh and blood—and what are we, as a country, doing to tackle this insidious mentality and its component causes?
In South Asian culture the birth of a son is celebrated because boys are seen as custodians of the family who will secure the family's future by providing economic security and ensuring the continuity of the male line. Conversely, the birth of a daughter is an impediment to this continuity since our culture dictates that upon marriage a girl must take up her husband's name, permanently leave her family and move in with her in laws. As such, the birth of a daughter is considered "a burden" because the family must protect her "honour", and when the time comes, find a husband willing to marry her and provide a hefty dowry to incentivise the marriage (or rather "transfer of burden"). The practice of dowry runs rampant despite it being outlawed in Bangladesh by the Dowry Prohibition Act 1980. Indeed, going back to the Narayanganj case, Jahirul himself had taken Tk 1 lakh as dowry from his wife. 
Given their inevitable departure from the family and the price that must be paid, educating girls (or educating them on par with their male siblings) is not seen as a sound investment. This mindset is encapsulated in the old and notorious Asian expression which warns: “educating a daughter is like watering another man's garden”. Rather paradoxically, it is our own sexist and cultural practices which deny a girl the same opportunities as a boy which in turn eternalises her financial dependence on male kin but the girl is then blamed for “being a burden” as though it was of her own doing. How can we feasibly assess a girl's worth when we do not even allow her to realise her full potential to begin with? 
In her book Gender Roles: A Sociological Perspective, Linda Lindsey explains how female infanticide and neglect are associated with the economic survival of the family, which is dependent on the number of sons and control of the number of daughters, who are regarded as financial liabilities. She further explains that a major shift in favouring males in the average sex ratio at birth (SRB) is growing throughout Asia and rural Bangladesh is among the places with the worst SRB imbalances. 
In 1990, Amartya Sen coined the term “missing women” to denote the shortfall in the number of women relative to the expected number of women in a region or country. This shortfall is usually measured through male-to-female sex ratios (such as SRB), and is theorised to be caused by sex-selective abortions, female infanticide. According to a study by the University of Kent, there are approximately 2.7 million missing women in Bangladesh (“Missing Women and Bare Branches: Gender Balance and Conflict”, ESCP Report, Issue 11). The study also found that gender imbalance in Asia is primarily the result of son preference and the profound devaluation of female life. The futility of the Dowry Prohibition Act in curbing the practice of dowry illustrates how legal change alone cannot remedy cultural malpractices; societal change must also follow.
Why must we wait till a female child is burnt or drowned alive to address the deep-rooted sexism and son preference which pave the way for barbaric practices such as female infanticide to occur? Every time we encounter anyone stating or doing something which is even remotely sexist or anti-women, we should call them out and retaliate. Indeed, change begins at home and change begins with us. We must attack sexism whenever we see it, from whomever we see it and in whatever shape or form we see it. 
by Taqbir Huda

Wednesday, 23 August 2017

Shkodran Mustafi: This is why I started to pray five times a day

Shkodran Mustafi is one of the most successful muslim  players in the world, he is also a world cup winner.
Arsenal member besides being a very good player, he is also good at practicing Islam.
He has shown an interesting story why he did’nt drink alohool when he was at Everton years ago.
“I started to practice religion from the age of 17. I was part of Everton. We went with teammates for dinner and all my friends where drinking but I did not. One of my friend asked why you do not drink you are German, I said I am a Muslim and I do not drink alcohol, “said Mustafi.
“My teammate always asked me why I am a Muslim, and I told him my parents are Muslim and I was raised in a family of believers”.
“I never asked myself why I am Muslim. My parents have taught me but I never wondered why I do not drink, why I don’t eat pork or other things. ”
“I started reading and searching for this answers, since then I started to pray five times a day and I feel happy with this,” said Mustafi.
“Faith is very similar to football. If you do not believe in what you are doing is useless because it will be bad, ” said the Albanian.
Mustafi is known in the  football world as player who practices Islam

Monday, 21 August 2017

The female face of Islamic law in Malaysia

Islamic law enforcers are not often credited with being feminist pioneers, but Judge Nenney fits both those descriptions.

She made history in Malaysia last year when she was appointed one of the first two female Syariah High Court judges in this Muslim-majority nation. "Syariah" is the Malay spelling for the Arabic word "sharia", meaning Islamic law.

And the 42-year-old mother of three doesn't shy away from imposing the harshest punishments prescribed by Islamic law.
"When I'm on the bench, I'm not a woman, I'm not a man. I'm a judge," she says. "I need to deal with the case fair and firm, to follow the law, no bias."
In Malaysia, more women are pursuing careers in the Islamic justice system, from judges and lawyers to court mediators.
Under Malaysia's two-tier court system, Islamic law courts deal with family and morality cases involving Muslims, such as consuming alcohol, gambling and polygamy, while secular courts hear criminal and many civil cases.
Malaysia appointed its first two female Syariah judges in 2010.

Now, 27 of the country's 160 Islamic court judges are women.
Full article 

Sunday, 20 August 2017

Islamic scholars offer themselves on sale for one-night stands with divorced Muslim women

The cleric, the investigation found, was already married. Still, he negotiated his role-play as a husband for a night with India Today's reporters posing as relatives of a divorced Muslim woman.
Will your wife object to it?" asked India Today's reporter.
"No, no. She won't have any objection," imam Nadeem replied.
"Have you spoken with her?" prodded the reporter. "No, I haven't spoken with her. I haven't told her. What's the need to tell her?" Nadeem shot back.
The Moradabad imam admitted he had officiated several nikah halala marriages before. This time, he proposed a package deal for the entire service, including sex. "It's Rs 1 lakh," he demanded.
Imam Nadeem guaranteed issuing divorce after spending a night with the bride for her to become eligible to go back to her first husband in accordance with the personal law. The business of one-night grooms is widespread, the India Today investigation observed.
At Delhi's Jamia Nagar, the team met Zubair Qasmi, a qualified maulana married with two wives. He nominated himself up for a third at the prospect of nikah halala, in exchange for money.
"I spend many nights out. It's much easier to manage this with two (wives). One would think I am with the second. And the second would think I am with the other. It's not at all difficult with two (wives)," he bragged.
Zubair Qasim based his fee on mehr - money or gift the groom pledges to his bride during Islamic marriages.
"Don't worry about anything. I'll make every arrangement. If Rs 30,000 is set as mehr, it will be either 40,000 or 50,000 (in return for participation in nikah halala). No problem in it," Qasim said.
The rot runs deep.
Next, India Today's investigative journalists visited Mohammad Mustaquim of Delhi's Darul Uloom Mahmoodia Madrasa.
Educated in Islamic studies, he was keen to do what he had done several times before -- sleeping with divorced women to consummate nikah halala.
"There was a woman in the room. I went there and had sex. Before leaving at 2-3 am, I divorced her," he confessed.
Mohammad Mustaquim performed nikah halala even without formal marriage.
"So you have taken part in three nikah halala. You actually married on one occasion, right? The other two nikha halala were without marriage," the reporter asked.
"Without marriage," he admitted. "After sleeping with her, I left at 1 am."
Mustaquim's fee for this service included donation for his madrasa. "You'll have to pay Rs 20,000 for the madrasa. I am ready to do it for whatever amount. I have done it several times before," he said.
As India awaits the Supreme Court's judgement over triple talaq, the dangerous trapdoor of nikah halala remains wide open for divorced Muslim women, the probe noted.
In some cases, potential deals were found to be brokered by clerics themselves.
At Bulandshahr's Til Gaon, imam Zahir-ul-lah of Mewatian Masjid introduced India Today's undercover reporters with a prospective groom for nikah halala.
Arif, the groom-to-be, was quick to boast about his masculinity despite his old age.
"My programme is all set, today, tomorrow or the day after. I am always fit 24x7, mashallah!" he remarked. His price: Rs 25,000 for a night.
In western UP's Hapur district, the team next met Mohammed Zahid, who runs a madrasa at Sikheda village.
He marketed his services for nikah halala as a professional.
"We'll see to it. We have the men. It will be done through them. If you don't trust them, I am always available for it," he said.
"How much money in total would you like us to organise for you?" asked the reporter.
"Between 1 lakh and 1.5 lakh," he answered. "Not above Rs 1.5 lakh and not less than Rs 1 lakh."
Rising above their political differences, Hindu and Muslim leaders called nikah halala a criminal act after India Today broadcast its investigation.
They demanded that the perpetrators should be prosecuted for rape.
"This is lust. It's not permissible in Islam. This is a criminal offence committed in the name of religion," said Maulana Maqsood-ul-Hasan Qasmi, the head of the Imam Council of India. "These people should be thrown out of the mosques. They should be booked."
Zafar Sareshwala, chancellor of the Maulana Azad National Urdu university, blamed personal laws for certain regressive practices in Islam.
"These people should be put in jail and charged with rape," he said, demanding strong action against men participating in nikah halala for one-night stands. "I think the genesis of the problem lies in the Shariat Act of 1937," he insisted. Authors of the personal laws, he added, had been "millions of miles away" from the teachings of Islam.
Maulana Ansar Raza of the Gharib Nawaz Foundation called for immediate ex-communication of religious scholars offering themselves for nikah halala. "They should be beaten with shoes and thrown out of mosques. They should be charged with rape. Nikah halala is a regressive un-Islamic practice," he said. "I salute India Today for this story."
In his comments, BJP spokesman Gaurav Bhatia, himself a lawyer, underscored the need for abolishing nikah halala like the sati practice in Hinduism. "Nikah halala and polygamy, as triple talaq are regressive. Sati is abolished. So should be these practices," he said. "India Today's expose will help the civilised society to come forward for human rights and dignity."