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Shia Waqf Board chief petitions court to ban ‘un-Islamic’ green flag, SC seeks Modi government’s response

Seeking central government's response to the petition asking for a ban on the flag, the bench of two judges, headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, has asked Additional Solicitor General Tushar Mehta to present government's opinions in this matter.

The apex court of the country has asked the Government of India to respond within two weeks on the demand to enforce a ban on the use of the green flag with a crescent moon and a star. Syed Waseem Rizvi of the UP Shia Waqf Board claimed in a petition filed by him that the flag is ‘unIslamic’ and it resembles Pakistani proponent Muslim League’s flag. He has demanded that the use of the flag be banned as it stirs tension in society.

Seeking central government’s response to the petition asking for a ban on the flag, the bench of two judges, headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, has asked Additional Solicitor General Tushar Mehta to present government’s opinions in this matter. The court had accepted the PIL petition of Wasim Rizvi, President of the Shia Waqf Board of Uttar Pradesh. Rizvi filed the petition on April 17, 2018.

Rizvi has asserted that the use of patently unIslamic flag by Muslims has exacerbated the rift between different communities as it is viewed with suspicion by others as representative of Pakistan and has a potential to flare up tensions between them. He argued that Prophet Mohammed used a white or a black flag in his caravan and not a green flag with a crescent moon and a star.

Rizvi said, “I have demanded an immediate ban on the green flag of the moon and a star from the Supreme Court because this flag is similar to the flag of Pakistan and the Muslim League.”

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Rizvi contended that the flag bearing a crescent moon and a star strongly resemble the national flag of Pakistan and many Muslim clerics wrongly associate the flag with Islam. He stated that the flag has nothing to do with Islam and it owes its origins to the All-India Muslim League which was founded by Mohammed Ali Jinnah and Nawaz Ul-Malik in 1906 in Dhaka.

He further added that All India Muslim League was dissolved on August 15, 1947, and the successor of this party with the name ‘Pakistan Muslim League’ was constituted in Pakistan. Currently, Pakistan Muslim League and Pakistan Muslim League( Qaid Azam) have their party flags inspired from it.

Rizvi said that Muslims in India use the flag like the Islamic flag. “This flag is hoisted in a Muslim-dominated area, which often causes disharmony among Hindus and Muslims. The petitioner says that crescent moon and star in the green flag were never part of any Islamic practise, nor do they have any significance in Islam, ” Rizvi said.

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