[Nahid Afrin too was unaware of any "Fatwa" issued against her and said she got to know about it when some people from the media called up her father last night.]
Guwahati: Blaming the media of spreading misinformation, Jamiat Ulema Assam on Wednesday rejected the claim that the state clerics have issued a "Fatwa" against Nahid Afrin, singer and the first runner-up in the 2015 season of a musical reality TV show.
Media reports today said that a fatwa had been issued against Nahid Afrin by some 46 Muslim clerics, warning her to stop singing as it was “against the Sharia”.
The news reports led to widespread outrage, leading Assam Chief Minister to tweet condemning the “Fatwa” and assuring the young singer of his government’s commitment to protect her freedom of speech and safety.
However, the primary evidence of the supposed "Fatwa" is a leaflet signed by 46 Muslim men and distributed in the districts of Hojai and Nagaon. It does not have any mention of Nahid Afrin, by name or otherwise, and is titled as "Appeal" in local language.
According to Scroll.in the leaflet asks people not to attend the March 25 event. “If anti-Sharia acts like musical nights are held on grounds surrounded by masjids, idgahs, madrassas and graveyards, our future generations will attract the wrath of Allah,” the leaflet in Assamese language says.
Reacting on the media reports, Secretary of Assam State Jamiat Ulema, Fazlul Karim Qasimi stressed that no "Fatwa" has been issued in this case and blamed the media for spreading misinformation.
“Is this how a Fatwa is issued? On a piece of paper?", Qasmi asked while talking to scroll.in.
"The venue in question is in close proximity to religious and educational institutes and there have been instances of people creating a ruckus during similar shows in the past.
“The appeal simply states that people might as well avoid the event since there have been instances of people getting drunk and vitiating the atmosphere in the past,” he claimed.
Qasmi insisted that the community was proud of Afrin – and the notice had nothing to do with her in particularly.
“It is just that she was performing in that particular venue", he said.
The 46 signatories of the pamphlet include office bearers of the Assam State Jamiat Ulama and teachers from various madrassas around the state.
Interestingly, Nahid Afrin too was unaware of any "Fatwa" issued against her and said she got to know about it when some people from the media called up her father last night, according to Scroll.in.
“For a few minutes, I thought I had done something wrong and I should give up singing", she said.
"But, many Muslim singers gave me inspiration to not quit music. I will never do so,” Nahid Afrin added.
A "Fatwa" is a religious decree. It is normally issued by a recognised Mufti on the letterhead of Darul Iftaa with seal, stamp and signature.