Fatwa forbidding suicide attacks tomorrow: minister
By Hasan Mansoor
KARACHI: The government has got a fatwa (decree) signed by religious scholars of all Islamic sects declaring suicide attacks on places of worship forbidden in Islam.
“The fatwa has been signed by hundreds of religious scholars of all sects and will be announced on Tuesday,” Dr Aamer Liaquat Hussain, minister of state for religious affairs, told Daily Times.
President Pervez Musharraf had assigned Dr Hussain to get a ‘comprehensive decree’ from clerics of all Islamic sects in an attempt to develop harmony among people of various sects and religions.“It took Dr Hussain around five months to get this fatwa signed,” an official based in Islamabad said.
“Those who plan and carry out such attacks are involved in anti-Islam and anti-humanity acts,” it says. The minister finally got this document signed by the clerics on Friday and has decided to announce it on Tuesday.
Prominent among those who have signed the fatwa are Mufti Munibur Rehman (Barelvi), Hafiz Mohammad Salafi (Ahl-e-Hadith) and Allama Riaz Hussain Najafi (Shia) while Deobandi scholars who have signed the document included Maulana As’ad Thanvi, Mufti Usman Yar Khan, Maulana Gul Naseer Hashmi and Hanif Jallandhry. “I have signed the fatwa and totally agree with its contents,” Mufti Munibur Rehman told Daily Times.
Interestingly, prominent Deobandi scholar Mufti Taqi Usmani did not sign the fatwa despite repeated efforts by the government. Officials said he had by and large seen the fatwa in the global perspective instead of seeing it in the context of Pakistan. “We have drafted the fatwa in the manner that it condemns suicide bombings in Pakistan and not anywhere else,” said Dr Hussain.
Most Deobandi scholars support suicide bombings in Palestine and Iraq, and say those involved in such acts are fighting usurpers and occupation forces.