On Thursday, prominent Shia cleric Maulana Kalbe Jawad Naqvi warned the Lucknow authorities against imposing a blanket ban on all Muharram rituals. The Shia cleric also said that he will be holding majlis (sermons) at the Imambara despite coronavirus protocols and dared the authorities to arrest them based on “unconstitutional order”.
According to Times of India report, Maulana Kalbe Jawad, attacking the Lucknow police authorities for putting a blanket ban on religious events due to coronavirus pandemic said that the guidelines issued for Muharram are unconstitutional and illegal.
Maulana Jawad, the cleric who is ‘mutawwali’ of Imambara Ghufranmaab, also said that he will hold religious events despite the restrictions and police are free to arrest him.
Coronavirus orders are against guidelines issued by WHO, says Maulana
As per the Times of India report, the cleric also submitted a written statement with the police commissioner claiming that the order to restrict religious events was not just misleading which has created turmoil in the community, but is also against the guidelines issued by WHO, central and state governments on coronavirus.
“This new guideline should be repealed immediately since COVID-19 protocols are already in place. And I will be taking the sermon from Friday at Imambara Ghufranmaab as has been for decades. The number of people will be limited to 50 along with thermal scanning, sanitisations, social distancing and masks,” Maulana Jawad said.
The controversial cleric added that he would request his community to not protest his arrest but adhere to coronavirus protocols strictly. Jawad also said that permission to hold majlis inside Imambaras by following strict protocols have been issued in Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and in Kashmir.
Meanwhile, several clerics including Jawad and All India Shia Personal Law Board general secretary Maulana Yasoob Abbas also claimed that the police is threatening taziya makers to neither make nor sell them. Taziyas are kept at homes by Muslims during Muharram as a replica of Imam Husain’s mausoleum.
“A number of taziya makers have complained to me that they are not being allowed to sell taziyas, which is absolutely against people’s rights and the law. These people have told me that they are being threatened by the police and problems are being created in their sale and purchase,” Jawad wrote in his memorandum to the police commissioner.
Maulana Jawad not new to controversy
Last year, Maulana Kalbe had stoked a huge controversy after he had provoked Muslims and the Dalits to take up arms. Shia cleric Maulana Kalbe Jawad has announced to set up a camp in Lucknow to teach them about the ‘right to self-defence’ and how to apply for a firearm licence.
Controversial lawyer Mahmood Pracha along with Maulana Syed Kalbe Jawad Naqvi had announced that they would conduct camps to assist people from the Muslim and Dalit communities to procure firearms.