P.K. ABDUL GHAFOUR
KOTTAKKAL, Kerala – Jamaat-e-Islami’s Malappuram district conference, which was attended by more than 100,000 people, has called upon authorities to withdraw the Draconian UAPA law that targets Muslim youth, and incriminate individuals and organizations who intentionally try to promote Islamophobia through strident campaign against Islam and Muslims.
Jamaat’s all-India vice president Nusrat Ali inaugurated the mammoth conference in Kottakkal and denounced the ruling BJP government’s move to create communal polarization by imposing rigid nationalism. He denounced the endeavors to tarnish the image of Islam and Muslims using pseudo Muslim individuals and link Islam with terrorism and extremism.
The vice president said Jamaat-e-Islami Hind stands for the welfare and goodness of the whole humanity. The beneficiaries of JIH’s humanitarian activities and relief programs include non-Muslims while it raises voice to protect the rights of Dalits and other backward communities. It has constructed thousands of homes all over the country for the poor and downtrodden.
Kerala state president M.I. Abdul Aziz presided over the conference and lambasted US President Donald Trump and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi for promoting racism and intolerance. “In Modi era intolerance has become the national language,” he said while criticizing the BJP government’s move to use judiciary and military to implement Hindutva agenda.
Abdul Aziz urged the LDF government in Kerala to stop applying UAPA. He criticized the Modi government for its inhuman handling of the body E. Ahamed, an all-India Muslim League leader, who collapsed inside the Parliament. Authorities tried to hide his demise and put him on machine for several hours after death to get enough time for holding the budget session.
O. Abdul Rahman, group editor of Madhyamam and Mediaone, was a keynote speaker. He said the administrations of Trump and Modi were trying to project even humanitarian organizations as terrorists. “Muslim organizations who do not understand the hidden agenda of these governments fight each other,” he said, adding that this is the last opportunity for them to fight for existence.
Munawwar Ali Shihab Thangal, president of Muslim Youth League, sent a message to the conference and urged all Muslim organizations to stand united to uphold the Ummah’s glory. “We should work together to solve the various problems facing society,” he said in a video message.
Hamas spokesman and Arab National Council member Osama Hamdan addressed the conference through videoconferencing from Beirut and called upon the Indian government to continue its unwavering support for the Palestinian cause. He urged the Indian media to expose Israel’s atrocities against unarmed Palestinian people and its human rights violations.
The historic Jamaat conference was held in paddy field of Puthoor near Kottakkal, the heartland of Ayurveda and Hindu-Muslim unity. People started pouring into the venue ahead of the inauguration, making the large paddy a human ocean. Women accounted for 60 percent of participants, reflecting success of Jamaat’s women empowerment programs.
Sheikh Mohammed Karakkunnu, vice president of JIH Kerala, expressed his satisfaction over the tremendous success of the district conference and expressed his hope that it would contribute to spreading the divine and peaceful message of Islam among more people.
“This is the first time JIH Kerala is holding district conferences all over the state under the theme ‘Islam is a balanced religion.’ The large-scale participation of Muslims in these conferences reflects their support for the Jamaat’s Islamic and humanitarian activities,” he told Saudi Gazette.
The conference called for shifting the Haj embarkation point from Nedumbachery airport to Karipur Airport for the benefit of a large number of Hajis who travel from the Malabar region. It also opposed the Modi government’s move to impose a unified civil code by taking up the issue of pronouncing three-time divorce together, which goes against the spirit of Islam.
Meanwhile, the cultural conference, which was held on Friday evening, called for human unity to defeat fascism. Professor K.K. Abid Hussein Thangal, a Muslim League MLA, opened the conference and urged Muslim organizations to work together with greater unity and solidarity.
“Fascist forces in the country will exploit the division among Muslim groups,” he said, adding that the central government was trying to prevent Muslims and minorities from receiving the basic rights guaranteed by the Indian constitution.
“They have used the death of an international figure like E. Ahamed to make political gains and this situation has created fear and insecurity among Muslims,” he told the huge gathering. Sheikh Mohammed presided over the cultural conference.
Professor A.P. Abdul Wahab, chairman of Kerala State Minorities Development Finance Corporation, said the Hindutva forces’ move to impose a single culture on all-Indians and the growing market culture were among the major challenges facing the society.