A day after veteran Bollywood actor Naseeruddin Shah condemned Indian Muslims for celebrating the victory of the Taliban in Afghanistan, some Indian Muslims descended on the social media platforms to abuse the award-winning actor for asking Muslims to observe peace and non-violence and not support radical Islamist groups.
On Wednesday, Naseeruddin Shah released a video condemning a section of Indian Muslims for celebrating the onslaught of the Taliban in Afghanistan. The veteran actor termed a section of Indian Muslims celebrating the Taliban’s return to power in Afghanistan as dangerous.
“While the Taliban regaining power in Afghanistan is a cause for concern for the whole world, celebrations by a section of Indian Muslims of the barbarians are no less concerning,” said Shah in a video.
A message for the Talibani cheerleader in India. pic.twitter.com/J0pVWZmwQI— Tejinder Singh Sodhi 🇮🇳 (@TejinderSsodhi) September 1, 2021
His video had come as a reaction to a section of Indian Muslims glorifying the radical Islamist outfit Taliban for capturing Afghanistan using force. Prominent Muslim clerics, a section of Indian “secular-liberal” media, had congratulated the Taliban for its recent success in Afghanistan and had said that the victory of the Taliban in the war-torn country is a moment of celebration for the entire Islamic community.
In response to such celebrations, the 71-year-old actor had released a video saying those rejoicing in the revival of the Taliban should question themselves if “they want to reform their religion or live with the old barbarism”.
In the video, Shah added that each Indian Muslim should ponder whether they are interested in a “reformed, modern Islam” or the “barbaric values” of past centuries.
“I am an Indian Muslim, and, as Mirza Ghalib said years ago, my relationship with my God is informal. So I don’t need a political religion,” the veteran actor said.
Naseeruddin Shah also further distinguished between what he called “Hindustani Islam” and what is practised elsewhere. “May God not bring a time when Islam in India changes so drastically that it is no longer recognisable,” he said in the video that has gone viral now.
Islamists take offence against Naseeruddin Shah’s video, asks him to mind his own business
The timely video of Naseeruddin Shah advising the fellow Muslims about cosying up to the radical Islamists outfits such as the Taliban has created an outrage in the Muslim community. Several Muslims, including the literates ones, have taken offence to the video of the veteran actor and have asked him to stay away from commenting on Islam.
Rifat Jawaid, of pro-AAP blog Janta Ka Reporter, slammed Naseeruddin Shah for his comments and said that he should rather stick to his films and steer clear of topics he does not know.
Calling Naseeruddin Shah a “non-practising” Muslim, Jawaid attacked the veteran actor for demanding religious reforms in Islam. “I wish he had first practised Islam before coming up with this appalling suggestion,” Rifat Jawaid said in his Twitter post.
Saba Naqvi, another ‘journalist’, also had a problem with Naseeruddin Shah’s advice to Indian Muslims. Taking to Twitter, Saba Naqvi asked why are so many Indian Muslims being asked to condemn the Taliban. She asked whether Indian Muslims chose, elect or invite the Taliban to India.
Saba Naqvi further said that the veteran actor has fallen into a trap to speak on the issue of the Taliban take over of Afghanistan.
Well, it is not just Rifat and Saba. Since yesterday, several Muslim social media users have been active on Twitter to abuse and condemn Naseeruddin Shah for giving “friendly” advice to his Muslim brethren.
Mohammed Hazar Imam schooled Naseeruddin Shah, saying that there is no need for reforms in Islam and nobody can bring reforms to the religion. Hazar Imam also claimed that if one followed the rules of Islam with all sincerity, he would be successful not just in his life but also in life after his death.
Another user Abdul Shahid said that Islam is about following Quran and following the Sunnah of the Nabi and nothing else. Refuting Naseeruddin Shah, Shahid claimed that Islam was already complete since its inception 1400 years ago, and there is nothing to add or remove from the religion.
They were responding to the video shared by The Wire journalist Arfa Khanum Sherwani. However, she has since done a flip flop on the entire issue. Initially, Arfa had taken to Twitter to post the video of Naseeruddin Shah on her timeline, quoting, “Indian Muslims should think whether they want reform and modernism in their religion or the values of past centuries.”
However, she took a u-turn after Islamists began to abuse her on the timeline. Fearing condemnation from fellow co-religionists, Arfa took a u-turn, saying she disagreed with Naseeruddin Shah. She said he could not certify who is an ideal or perfect Muslim.
“Only Allah knows who is the most virtuous of us all,” Arfa said, adding that she does not agree with everything Naseeruddin Shah said.
Responding to Arfa Khanum Sherwani, who initially was on the same page as Naseeruddin Shah but later changed her stance after being trolled by Islamists, a social media user Wasim Shaikh warned both Arfa and Naseer to not offer their opinion on the issue as they have no status to talk about Islam. He said if Muslims acts like Mongols, the world will be full of Muslims by now.
Taki Khan indirectly compared Naseeruddin Shah to a dog.
Ever since Taliban took over Afghanistan, people have raised their concerns over human rights violation as well as women’s rights. Shocking visuals emerged from Afghanistan after Kabul fell to the Islamist group where people were trying to get out of the country in hope for a better future. Visuals of people hanging on to planes as they took off went viral along with visuals of Afghans falling from the sky from these planes. Amid all this, many Indian Muslims have welcomed the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan. Taliban is a believed to have drawn inspiration from Deobandi movement from Uttar Pradesh.