NEW DELHI: The Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat India (JMAI) has strongly condemned the demand the deletion of 26 verses of the Holy Quran and filing a public interest petition in the Supreme Court in this regard.
Reacting to a recent petition filed by the former Chairman of the Uttar Pradesh Shia Central Waqf Board Waseem Rizvi in the Supreme Court seeking removal of 26 verses from the Koran on the grounds that they “promote violence and terrorism, JMAI said in a press release, that the demand is not in the public interest but is tantamount to undermining the peace and security of the country.
Blaming the Holy Quran that it teaches violence and extremism in its 26 verses is due to the lack of understanding the true meaning of the verses, the release said. The AMJI said “those who want to know the truth of these verses come to us.”.
Rizvi argued that the Quran contains “some verses that are used to promote terrorism, violence, jihad.” A Muslim cleric has even offered a bounty of ₹20,000 for anyone who brings Rizvi’s head.
“Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat has a clear belief that not a single chapter, verse, or even a punctuation mark can be omitted from the holy Quran. The teachings of the Qur’an are applicable at all times and in all places and guide a person on the right path.
“The Qur’an is the word of God Almighty. It contains teachings that are for the welfare of mankind and it contains injunctions that are interfaith unity, compassion to humanity and are the guarantors of law and order and global peace,” the release said.
“Although there are extremist groups who seek to promote terrorism by misusing certain verses of the Qur’an for their self-interest and to sabotage the world, but imposing such allegations on Holy Quran cannot be justified in any way.
“The Qur’an says that if one kills an innocent person, it is as if he has killed the whole of humanity. Islam has always given priority to the establishment of peace and security and has expressed its disapproval over taking of lives. By understanding the Qur’an and pondering on its verses with purity of heart and self-purification, God Himself explains the meaning of these verses to man,” the release said.
“God Almighty has taken the responsibility of preserving literal and the meaning of the Qur’an. The verses of the Qur’an are preserved in the hearts of millions of people in the world and for the last 1,400 years not a single one of its punctuations has changed which is acknowledged by all Muslims. For the sake of the spiritual protection of the holy Quran, Allah Almighty has sent spiritually enlightened people and those who have access to religious knowledge in every age.
Just as He sent the founder of the Ahmadiyya Jamaat, Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Sahib Qadiani (peace be on him) through whom Allah Almighty Has enlightened the world and removed the misconceptions that were found among the people regarding the Holy Quran and the glory of the Holy Quran was once again established in the world,” it added.
“Our country, India, is home to people of many religions and faiths. Everyone here has religious freedom and every citizen here cares about the religious feelings of their fellow beings and respects the leaders of other religions and their elders and their holy books and that is what this country is all about. It is the base of peace and order in this country. It is by no means right to hurt the religious feelings of others under the guise of religious freedom. We ask such people to make a serious effort to understand the Quran before blaming it,” it said.
Earlier, the Prince of Arcot, Nawab Mohammed Abdul Ali, said the petition had been condemned by eminent people and learned scholars from both the Shia and Sunni communities. “Such an absurd, frivolous and vexatious petition deserves to be dismissed at the outset,” he said.
“There is not a single verse in the entire Holy Qur’an, which promotes violence or terrorism, when read in its proper context. The Holy Qur’an condemns unjustified violence and terrorism, while permitting self-defence. Only a distorted reading of verses taken out of the context can lead to such utterly wrong views, as expressed by Waseem Rizvi,” the Prince of Arcot said in a statement.
He said the court was not the proper forum or body to decide which verses can be allowed or removed from a religious book. “This would be a serious interference in the religious beliefs of communities concerned affecting their right to freedom of religion. If any court entertains such a petition, tomorrow it may be faced with similar petitions for the removal of verses from the religious books and scriptures of other religious communities,” his statement read.
Even before Rizvi’s petition, 36 years ago advocate Chandmal Chopra and one Sital Singh had moved the Calcutta High Court seeking a ban on the Quran altogether under Article 226 (power of the High Court to issue some writs) of the Indian Constitution. The petition sought the Calcutta High Court to direct the government to ‘forfeit’ every copy of the ‘Holy book’.