Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Interesting Series of Articles -views expressed by scholars

For reading and circulation

Here is an interesting debate between S. Gurumurrthy on the one hand and Javed Anand and A Faizur Rehman on the other through the columns of the New Indian Express.

First Gurumurthy wrote an article 'The Holy Text and Terror'. [Article 1}

Javed Anand responded to that by his article 'Hate is found in the heart not in texts'. [Article 2]

Gurumurthy answered Javed Anand in his article 'It's concern for Muslims and India, not hate' [Article 3]

Faizur Rehman joined issue with Gurumurthy in his response 'Quranic Verses Quoted out of context' [Article 4]

Gurumurthy responded to Faizur Rehman by his concluding article 'Abusing the messenger will not help [Article 5]


Article 1 by S. Gurumurthy which began the debate

The Holy Text and Terror
S. Gurumurthy


“Wait only for five minutes from now! Wait for the Mujahideen and Fidayeen of Islam who will make you feel the terror of Jihad. And stop them if you can. Feel the havoc cast into your hearts by Allah, the Almighty, face His Dreadful Punishment, and suffer the results of fighting the Muslims and the Mujahideen. Await the anguish, agony, sorrow and pain. Await, only for 5 minutes, to feel the fear of death.” Within minutes of this e-mail finding its way into media computers, the Jihadi bombs in Ahmedabad blew to smithereens over 50 persons. By the time terror hit Ahmedabad, such e-mails had become the pattern. The mails came ahead of the blasts in Jaipur and Bengaluru earlier. Also now in Delhi which was blasted on Sept 13. All in the name of Indian Mujahideen. See how, in its Ahmedabad mail, the jihadi outfit unveils its Islamic agenda against the Hindus – read India.

“O Hindus!....Haven't you still realised that the falsehood of your 33 crore mud idols and the blasphemy of your deaf, dumb, mute and naked idols of ram, krishna and hanuman are not going to save your necks, Insha-Alla, from being slaughtered by our hands? Nor is your fictitious faith in monkeys, pigs and nude statutes going to save you from the Wrath of Allah and His Humiliating Punishment. Know that it is only the true confession of the Oneness of Allah Alone, with no associates, that can save your blood from being spilled on the streets of your own cities. We call you, O Hindus, O enemies of Allah, to take an honest stance with yourselves lest another attack of Ibn-e-Qasim sends shivers down your spines, lest another Ghauri shakes your foundations, and lest another Ghaznawi massacres you, proving your blood to be the cheapest of all mankind! Have you forgotten your history full of subjugation, humiliation, and insult? Or do you want us to repeat it again? Take heed before it is too late!”

The IM goes further, quotes the most fundamental document, the Quran, to validate its theological stand. “Yes! We - the terrorists of India – THE INDIAN MUJAHIDEEN, - the militia of Islam whose each and every Mujahid belongs to this very soil of India - have returned, to execute the compulsion of Allah: “Fight them (the disbelievers), Allah will punish them by your hands and bring them to disgrace, and give you victory over them and He will heal the hearts of those who believe.” (Qur’an 9:14). It goes on to quote: “Fight those disbelievers who are near you and let them find harshness in you”. (Qur’an 9: 123). “Go forth light armed or heavy armed and fight with your wealth and your lives in the way of Allah”.[(Qu’ran 9: 41).

So the IM claim is simply this: we are doing what the Quran commands us to do against the non-believers, namely those who do not believe in Islam. The jihadis have openly challenged the pure Islamic theologians to deny that the position it takes against the Hindus is not the position of pure Islam. No Islamic theological school, not a single Mulla or Moulvi has shown the guts to tell the jihadis that non-believers in Quran do not mean non-Muslims. The Islamist scholars have kept deafening silence. The jihadis have thus effectively shut the Islamists' mouth by quotes from the holy Quran.

But what about the secularists? The terrorists are misguided youths, angered by the Hindu outfits in Gujarat and elsewhere, they would counsel. The grievances of the terrorists need to be addressed, they would pontificate, to dissuade them from the wrong path. But what the seculars miss is that the jihadis claim, on the basis of their faith, the right to kill ordinary Hindus. Do the seculars have the guts to ask the Islamic scholars to come out and deny that the theological position of Islam is not what the terrorists claim it to be? But, not surprisingly, not a single secular media or editor, nor any political party or leader would dare ask why the Islamic theologians are silent on the terrorists' view of the holy book. What has their grievance against Hindu outfits or the governments to do with their claim that Islam mandates them to attack non-Muslims? The real issue is whether the Islamic faith mandates so. If the jihadis are aggrieved then they can take to violence against the state. Terrorism normally isolates the terrorists from the mainstream society. But when the terrorists claim that they have been directed by their Holy Text to kill people of other faiths and that view is not challenged by the mainstream scholars or the secularists, then the terrorists cannot be isolated. This is what the seculars seem to have preferred to miss out.

Thus neither have the mainstream Islamic scholars challenged the jihadi's view that their holy text authorizes them to kill the non-believers nor have the secularists asked the mainstream Islamic scholars to deny the terrorists' version of the Islamic faith. Emboldened the terrorists have now moved a step further in the Delhi terror mail. While, in the Ahmedabad mail, the jihadis have embarrassed the Islamic theologians by quoting the holy text, they have embarrassed the seculars in the Delhi terror mail by relying on the seculars' view to justify their terror against the Hindus. The secular enthusiasts had carried on a relentless hate campaign against the BJP and Narendra Modi after the Gujarat riots. Then had even trivialized the Godhra terror attack that had roasted over 60 Ramsevaks, saying that it was an accident or that the victims themselves had lit fire to the bogy, which enraged the Hindu outfits even more. Later when acts of terror increased, the secular media even rationalized them by citing the Gujrat riots as justification for terrorists' anger. This secular largesse did not assuage the extremists. Instead it has put the Islamist terror on an escalator. Not surprisingly the jihadis have, in the Delhi email, used the very logic of the secular media, and very photographs carried by it a thousand times, to claim that they were taking revenge for the Gujarat carnage!

While the Jihadis see terror as a mandate of the holy book, the secular media remains juvenile in its oration. It still cites Shabana Azmi's inability to get a fourth flat, in the building of her choice in the place of her choice as illustrative of the failure of constitutional equity to minorities, and asks how could there be peace with such injustice! But, no section is more badly treated or discriminated than the untouchables in India. If the seculars' logic for jihadis' violence is applied to them, they can legitimately turn terrorists. But mere grievances cannot produce that deadly hate. It is the jihadi theological claim, uncontested by the Islamist clergy and the seculars, that makes terror a religious duty, and a deadly one at that. Injustice, minus theology, cannot breed that deadly terror. Unless the debate on terror transcends the trivia and gets to the root of the terror – the theological motive for terror – the seculars will end up promoting terror, not containing it. Will they introspect?


Article 2 by Javed Anand responding to the above article by S. Gurumurthy

Hate is found in the heart, not in texts

Javed Anand
25 Sep 2008 03:18:00 AM IST

ROLLOVER Archimedes and you, too, Isaac Newton! Here comes S Gurumurthy, with his Mother of All Discoveries! Mercifully, he wasn’t in his bathtub when in a blinding flash he got it, his simple-as-can-be universal laws on terrorism. First Law of Terror: ‘Injustice, minus theology, cannot breed deadly terror.’ Second Law of Terror: ‘Muslims are terrorists because theology (Quran) commands them to kill.’ The sheer simplicity of his propositions should bowl all of us over but for a few hitches in his high theory. What theology, one might wonder, prompted the French ‘reign of terror’ in the closing decade of the eighteenth century? What turned Mikhail Bakunin, a Russian aristocrat, into the ‘founding father’ of anarchism and a protagonist of revolutionary terror in the latter part of the nineteenth century? Closer to our time, could it be Catholicism that drove the Irish Republican Army into acts of ‘deadly terror?’ Not too far from where he lives, has Hindu theology inspired the LTTE to celebrate the cult of suicide bombers? What accounts for naxalite terror? If Gurumurthy’s First Law of Terror poses a few difficulties, so does his Second Law of Terror. The tripod that is the foundation for this law rests on the three ‘kill’ verses from the Quran as quoted from the murderous e-mails of the Indian Mujahideen.

Gurumurthy need not have waited for these monsters to surface. He could have as easily have plucked the same verses, and some more, from the innumerable ‘Hate Islam’ websites years ago. I could cite them here but why burden a man already consumed by hate? Instead, here are some Quranic verses that say the exact opposite of those that Gurumurthy loves. “If they hold aloof from you and wage not war against you and offer you peace, Allah alloweth you no way against them” (4.09). “Fight in the way of Allah against those who fight against you, but begin not hostilities. Lo! Allah loveth not aggressors” (2.19).

“Allah does not forbid you respecting those who have not made war against you on account of (your) religion, and have not driven you forth from your homes, that you show them kindness and deal with them justly; surely Allah loves the doers of justice” (6.08).

In short, Allah forbids Muslims from war except in self-defence.

Here again are a few sayings of Prophet Mohammed. “Those in whose heart is not mercy for others will not attain the mercy of Allah”; “Power consists in not being able to strike another, but in being able to control oneself when anger arises”; “A perfect Muslim is one from whose tongue and hands mankind is safe”. “He will not enter paradise whose neighbour is not safe from his wrongful conduct”; “The ink of the scholar is more holy than the blood of the martyr”.

On May 31 this year, five lakh Muslims from all over India assembled for a rally at the Ramlila Grounds in Delhi.

There they raised hands and took an ‘Oath of Allegiance’: “We fully support the declaration of this ‘Anti-Terrorism Global Peace Conference’ of the Jamiatul Ulama-i-Hind and other organisations.

We are bound by the fatwa of Darul Uloom, Deoband and undertake that we shall condemn terrorism and spread Islam’s message of global peace.” Be it 9/11, 7/7 (UK), the Beslan massacre, the Bali bombings, the Madrid blasts, after each such barbaric event, I could cite fatwas from the highest Islamic authorities from Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Iran, Jordan, Indonesia, US, UK, Spain.

So which is the ‘real’ Islam? That of Osama bin Laden, al Qaeda, SIMI and IM, all of whom together add up to but a minuscule, albeit lethal, number of the 1.4 billion Muslims? Or of Muslim religious leaders in India and elsewhere, each of whose following runs into millions? More to the point, we might ask: why does Allah (Quran) and Prophet Mohammed teach one thing and its very opposite at the same time? For an answer to this paradox let’s go to the Bhagavad Gita, “the greatest gospel of spiritual works ever yet given to the race” (Sri Aurobindo).

How can Lord Krishna’s sermon to Arjuna that to fight and kill was his dharma be called the “greatest spiritual gospel”? Sri Aurodbindo: “We will use only soul force and never destroy by war or any even defensive employment of physical violence? Good, though until soul force is effective, the Asuric force in men and nations tramples down, breaks, slaughters, burns, pollutes, as we see it doing today, but then at its ease and unhindered, and you have perhaps caused as much destruction of life by your abstinence as others by resort to violence.” As for those who might see Vishnu’s incarnation as a “God of War,” here’s a commentary you could access from Hindu_Scriptures.htm: “Lord Krishna, after failing to convince him that it is the duty of a warrior to fight in a righteous war, reveals himself to Arjuna and answers his questions on the nature of the universe, the way to God and the meaning of duty.

“This magnificent dialogue between man (Arjuna) and Creator (Krishna) forms the Bhagavad Gita, in which the Hindu doctrine is fully explained.” Allah’s message to Prophet Mohammed and his followers in the nascent city-state of Medina, greatly outnumbered and overwhelmed on the eve of a war not of their choosing, resonates with Lord Krishna’s message to Arjuna.

No holy text preaches hate. But as the history of all religions shows, if we harbour it in our hearts, we can read hate in any sacred text we like: Bible, Quran or the Gita.

Javed Anand is co-editor Communalism Combat and general secretary, Muslims for Secular Democracy.


Article 3 S. Gurumurthy's response to Javed Anand's article

It is concern for India and Muslims, not hate.
S. Gurumurthy


“Gurumurthy need not have waited for these monsters to surface. He could have as easily plucked the same verses and some more from the innumerable “Hate Islam” websites years ago. But why burden a man already consumed by hate.” These unfortunate remarks of Javed Anand, in his response to my article on 'The Holy Text and Terror' show how anger has got better of the reason in him. What he sees hate in me is what, as I explain here, I see as the concern in me for both Muslims and India. I had critiqued the Islamic scholars inability to take the jihadis head on and the seculars engagement with the trivia like Shabhana Azmi's concern for a better flat in a better locality. Now read on.

Javed Anand reduces my article to two propositions. First “Injustice minus theology cannot breed deadly terror” and second, “Muslims are terrorists because theology [Quran] commands them to kill”. He is right on the first and wrong, even malicious, on the second. He has not rebutted what I had said, which I is okay; but he has accused that I have said 'Muslims are terrorists', which I cannot ignore. I quote here the central concern of my article. “So the IM [terrorists] claim is simply this: we are doing what the Quran commands us to do against the non-believers, namely those who do not believe in Islam. The jihadis have openly challenged the pure Islamic theologians to deny that the position it takes against the Hindus is not the position of pure Islam. No Islamic theological school, not a single Mulla or Moulvi has shown the guts to tell the jihadis that non-believers in Quran do not mean non-Muslims. The Islamist scholars have kept deafening silence. The jihadis have thus effectively shut the Islamists' mouth by quotes from the holy Quran.”

The core of my concern – yes it is concern, not hate as Javed Anand says in anger – is what is stated in bold letters. And this is precisely what Javed Anand sidesteps. Every time, anywhere they strike, the terrorists – which ever Islamic group they belong to – invariably claim that they are targeting the 'non-believers'. And every time they claim so, the Islamic theologians issue a standard statement that 'Islam does not countenance terror against innocent people' and it is a 'religion of peace'. It is true that the Jamiat-ul Ulama-i-Hind and other organisations held the “Anti-terrorism Global Peace Conference” at Deoband. It is commendable that a large gathering of Muslims at the Ramlila Maidan in Delhi took oath against terror. The move is late just by a couple of decades, as it took place as late February 25, 2008. Terrorism has been striking at India, in Jammu and Kahsmir in 1980s and elsewhere later from 1990s. Nevertheless it is a great move in the national, and Muslim, interest. But the move is in no small measure due to the increasing crescendo of the globally-led debate about whether Islam supports acts of the terrorists as they claim. This debate has been started in India and sustained by many who had to face hostile criticism and calumny for expressing their concern at the claim of the terrorists that Islam commanded them to act. If it were not external pressure why did the prestigious Deoband seminary wait for decades to make its first move to say that terrorism is not authorised by Islam? Any way better late than never.

Now let us examine the fatwa against terror issued from Dar-ul-uloom Deoband which Javed Anand sees as the Islamic theological counter to the terrorists' claim of theological support. The conference defined terrorism as: "Any action that targets innocents, whether by an individual or by any government and its agencies or by a private organisation constitutes an act of terrorism." It also said "Terrorism negates completely the teachings of Islam as it is the faith of love and peace and any terrorist activity which targets innocent people directly contradicts Islam's concept of peace." And finally, it says "We reject all forms of terrorism and do not allow any discrimination. Terrorism is completely wrong and unthoughtful act whoever commits, irrespective of his association to whatever religion, community and class he belongs to." Can one fail to notice the qualification of “innocent people” attached to the fatwa in the already abstract move. So “Targeting to kill the innocent people” is alone terror according to the fatwa. If the terrorists target those who are not innocent -- normally the police, army personnel or others, while they are sleeping or eating, fall in this category – is that not terror? Let not this side issue, though significant, detain us. Now, on to the core issue.

The core element of the terrorists claim is, as I have said in my article and emphasised it bold letters here earlier, this: they are commanded by the holy text to kill the 'non-believers'. The question is who are non-believers? It needs no seer to say that, for the terrorists, non-believers are those who do not believe in Islam. This is what attracts even highly educated techies and motivates them to turn terrorists in the cause of Islam against non-believers – read non-Muslims. This is the theological magnet for mobilisation. This is what the Deoband has not rebutted. It has not said, nor has any other Islamic School, that 'don't read non-believers in the Quran as non-Muslims'. If the Islamic clergy declares that “non-believers does not mean non-Muslims” and issues a fatwa against those who consider non-Muslims as non-believers, then, and then only, the terrorists cannot use theology as a magnet to attract the Muslim youth to kill the non-believers! That the terrorists make use Islamic theology for their actions cannot be denied, and has not been. Why then the Islamic scholars not openly declare that 'non-believers do not mean non-Muslims'. But they seem to find it difficult.

Here is my personal experience of their difficulty. In late 1990s, a well-meaning social worker from Calcutta and lawyer friend of mine [a Muslim] had organised a Hindu-Muslim dialogue in Madras, as Chennai was then, to discuss and sort out differences. In my brief intervention I asked the Islamic scholars present whether according to Islamic texts 'Hindus' were non-believers [Kufirs] and said that if the Hindus were not, then the problem between Hindus and Muslims would be just political, not theological. After some silence a very prominent Muslim leader declared that Hindus were, as per Islam, non-believers [Kufirs]. While a majority howled him down, a theologian present did come in his rescue though in a convoluted manner. This is the theological gap in the Islamic discourse. The terrorists are exploiting it. A clear statement from Islamic schools that the non-beliers do not mean non-Muslims in Islam will fill the gap. The Islamic theologians seem to avoid a confrontation with the terrorists in this point. This is what my article points out, and this is what Javed Anand misses or side steps. It is clear that Javed, the Muslim, not Javed Anand, the secularist has dominated the response. Anyway he should have read my article once more, before responding. QED: When angry, don't write.


Article 4 by A. Faizur Rehman responding to S. Gurumurthy's article [Article 1]

Quranic verses quoted out of context

A Faizur Rahman
30 Sep 2008 12:47:00 AM IST

THIS has reference to the articles, “The holy text and terror” (September 18), “Concern for India and Muslims, not hate” (September 26) by S Gurumurthy and “Hate is found in the heart, not in texts” (September 25) by Javed Anand.

Although Javed Anand’s article was an excellent rejoinder to Gurumurthy’s first article in which he effectively disproved Gurumurthy’s theories on Muslim terrorism, there are some theological aspects that need to be clarified in the context of the hatred Gurumurthy’s articles may have generated in the minds of innocent non-Muslims.

Gurumurthy repeatedly claims that no Muslim scholar or institution “has shown the guts” “to challenge the jihadis’ view that the holy text authorises them to kill the non-believers.” He cites the verses quoted out of context in the email allegedly sent by some terror group to give the impression that all non-Muslims are to be fought against and killed.

Let it be known that Muslim institutions such as the Deoband do not have to react to emails sent by faceless fringe elements who claim to represent the Muslims. Had such an email been sent by any authentic Muslim organisation and had Deoband not responded to it then perhaps Gurumurthy had a point.

Does Gurumurthy know that no Hindu institution has so far condemned the Hindu terrorist outfits which have killed Christians and burnt their churches? Nevertheless, the key Quranic term that Gurumurthy wants clarified is kafir (non-believer). It has to be conceded that the Quran does not refer to all non-Muslims as kafirs. The word ‘kafir’ is derived from its Arabic root kufr which in general terms means; to conceal, to reject, to be thankless, ungrateful, to disown or to deny. Sometimes a farmer is referred to as a kafir because he conceals the seed below the soil.

In Quranic terminology a kafir is a person (including a Muslim) who does one of these things: a) intentionally hides the truth; b) refuses to see reason out of arrogance even in the face of evidence, and c) is ungrateful or thankless.

Let us analyse a few verses to understand this.

“O People of the Book! Why do you reject (takfuroona) the Signs of God, of which you are witnesses? O People of the Book! Why do you clothe Truth with falsehood, and conceal the Truth, while you have knowledge? (3:70-71) “Do not those who deny (allazeena kafaru) see that the heavens and the earth were joined together (as one unit of creation), before we clove them asunder? We made from water every living thing.

Will they not then be convinced? (21:30) “It is God Who has created the heavens and the earth and sends down rain from the skies, and with it brings out fruits to feed you; it is He Who has made the ships subject to you, …And He gives you of all that you ask for. If you count the favours of God, never will you be able to number them. Yet, man is unjust and ungrateful (kaffaar).” (14:32-34) In each of these verses the terminology used for “concealing the truth”, “refusal to see reason” and “ingratitude” (takfuroona, kafaru and kaffaar respectively) only describes the attitude of some people towards truth. There is nothing to show that non-Muslims are referred to here.

The Quran in many such verses only reasons with humanity to recognise the existence of The Creator through the evidence it offers. For instance, in the second quoted verse the Quran talks about the ‘Big Bang’ theory and the aquatic origin of life to convince mankind that these acts of nature were actually the handiwork of God. Thus, it may be concluded that any person who refuses to acknowledge a universal truth for any of the aforementioned reasons is a kafir in the language of the Quran. But does that mean that such kafirs must be forced to believe by those “Muslims” who have recognised God? Certainly not. The Quran says, “If God had Willed, all those who are on earth would have believed together.

Will you then compel people till they become believers?” (10:99). The Quran further instructs the Messenger, and through him all Muslims, saying, “If they (the kafirs) turn away (from the truth), We have not sent you as a guard over them. Your duty is only to proclaim the Message.” (42:48) It may therefore be asked; who are the kafirs against whom war was permitted? Assuredly they are not non-Muslims in general but those Makkah rebels who had unilaterally broken their treaties with the Muslims and attacked them first. Gurumurthy quoted verses 9:14, 41 & 123 all out of context. Had he bothered to read 9:12-13 it would have become clear to him who the Quran was referring to.


Article 5. by S. Gurumurthy responding to Faizur Rehman's article and concluding the debate.

Abusing the messenger will not help

S. Gurumurthy

I must congratulate A. Faizur Rehaman for having attempted to clarify in his article 'Quranic verses quoted out of context' that 'Kafir' [non-believer] in Quran does not mean non-Muslims – read Hindus. This is precisely what Javed Anand would not even attempt to do earlier in his response to my article 'The Holy Text and the Terror'. Surprisingly, despite Rehman's more balanced write-up, there seems to be convergence between the two Muslim writers about me. While Javed Anand says that I am consumed by hate, Rehman is more sophisticated; he says that some theological aspects needs to clarified in the context of the 'hatred' my article may have created in the minds of the innocent non-Muslims. Both of them seem to agree that it is not the theological content of the email of the terrorists which would create “hate', but my asking the Islamic scholars to clarify whether what the terror email says is true or not, will.

Yet there is some difference between them. Javed Anand says that the Deoband Islamic seminary has taken initiative to condemn terror of all kinds, in the process, conceding that the Islamic theologians have a duty to counter the views of the terrorists. But Rehman does not seem to be with him on this. He is clear that the Deoband seminary need not take notice of the terror mail sent by some faceless, Islamic fringe elements and respond to them. He seems to be of the view that such prestigious institutions should not seen to be responding to such irresponsible Mujahideens! Will Sri Rehman stop for a moment and think what will happen if the Deoband seminary waits for the fringe elements to become more than the fringe ones for it to respond? In that case there may be no Deoband seminary to clarify, as it might have been either wiped out or would have joined the fringe to make it more than the fringe. It is ridiculous to say that the terrorists are a fringe today and so the Deoband need not respond. Again are they fringe group in just holding a particular view of the Quran, or are they fringe group holding a particular view of Quran on the one hand and bombs and AK47 on the other? Responsible Muslims like Rehman should think twice before taking such opaque positions.

Again, both Javed Anand and Rehman have written that I have quoted the verses of Quran. I don't think either of them read my article with the minimum care that it deserved before responding. I had only cited what the terrorists had quoted and not quoted anything from the Quran directly myself. So to charge me with having quoted from the Quran selectively is to obfuscate the real issue. If anyone had quoted the Quran selectively or comprehensively it is the Islamist terrorists. In fact the verse which they had quoted in the Delhi terror mail was so terribly violent to non-Muslims I did not want even to cite it! All that I did was to bring the message of the terrible things being claimed by the terrorists as from the Quran to the attention of the Islamic theologians. I had only asked them to clarify in the interest of their own community and in the national interest that what the terrorists are quoting is either untrue, or that their interpretation that Hindus are non-believers, who they have a duty to kill, is perversion. It is my duty as a citizen and an experienced commentator to bring it to the attention of the Islamic scholars if they had failed to notice it.

Rehman says that my doing this duty – not the terrorists quoting the holy text for their violence – might create hate or hatred in the minds of innocent non-Muslims. Let the readers evaluate what will create hatred. What I have said is this: “Dear Islamic theologians, the terrorists have quoted the Quran – to the effect that the holy text commands them to kill non-Muslims, and so please clarify that what the terrorists are saying is not what the holy Quran does”. But Rehman says that me who had just requested the Islamic theologians to clarify that the Quran does not command the Muslims to kill non-Muslims as non-believers and the secularists to demand such clarification, is the hate monger, and the terrorists are just fringe elements fit to be ignored! Again let the Deoband seminary take the position that terrorists are fringe groups whom they do not recognize nor want to respond to. Why should Rehman talk for Deoband seminary?

One thing is clear. Neither Javed Anand nor Faizur Rehman want to face the truth. It is the terrorists – not me – who claim that Quran commands the Muslims to kill non-Muslims. Well-meaning Muslims have to face this truth. But, like me, even Rehman, and Javed Anand, despite being Muslims, cannot do anything about it. Like me, they can only ask, and ought to join me in asking, the Islamic theologians to counter it. It is only the authentic voices of the Islam, the Deoband seminaries and the like, not Faizur Rehaman and Javed Anand, who can deny what the terrorists have claimed and say that, in Islam, Hindus and other non-Muslims are not Kafirs [non-believers] to be done away with. I do not think that the non-Muslims who are the targets of the terrorists will accept what Faizur Rehman says as the truth of the Quranic verses unless the authentic Islamic seminaries say so. If they just say it is a wrong interpretation of the holy text, that will not suffice. They have to say that the terrorists' view of the holy text is perversion. Nothing short of such denunciation will vindicate the true meaning of the holy text. I had just reported what the terrorists had claimed. It is necessary to read that message, and deny the terrorists the legitimacy to speak for the faith. Instead of doing that, abusing the messenger will not help

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