Seema Chishti


Refuting implicit and explicit charges of the Hindu fundamentalist organizations that Muslims do not owe  loyalty to India, the highest religious authority of Indian Muslims asserts, as others have done, the faith of Indian  Muslims in the secular constitution of India.



New Delhi: In a rare public comment, the Mohtamim or chief of the Dar-ul-Uloom, Deoband, the most respected  Islamic seminary in India – rated next to only Al Azhar in Cairo – has used strong words to react to “questions”  raised by certain groups on how Muslims in India view the country and whether they see it as Dar ul Harb (Land  of apostates) or Dar ul Islam (Land of Islam).   


In a written response to ‘The Indian Express’, Mohtamim Marghoobur Rahman, has said: “There is no question  to call it Dar ul Harb. It is Dar ul Amn. So long as Indian Muslims enjoy protection according to Indian  Constitution, they are bound to serve their motherland. We are patriotic Muslims and shall ever remain so  according to the Indian Constitution. ..According to Indian Muslims, India is their motherland. They have been  prepared and are still being prepared to serve their country in all possible constructive manners.”   


The Dharma Raksha Samiti, a group of religious leaders connected with the Vishwa Hindu Parishad, had written  to Muslim organizations last week wanting them to declare India a friend of Islam and to declare war against  India as un-Islamic.    Without referring to this, Rahman said: “Hindus and Muslims are two wheels of a cart; everyone in India enjoys  religious freedom. Freedom of expression is the main theme of our Preamble of our Constitution. Secular ideas  are the lifeline of our social life. It is wonder that such irrelevant questions are put forward just before the  general elections for attaining vested interests”.    He added: “Indian Muslims honor from the core of their heart the Indian Constitution and believe in it heart and  soul.”   


On February 25 last year, in a fatwa in Deoband – the first such to be issued by any Islamic organization in the  world – the Dar ul Uloom declared terrorism un-Islamic.


(Indian Express, Posted online: Feb 26, 2009)

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