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Opponent to UCC and CAA, 26/11 conspiracy theorist: Meet Maulana Mahmood Madani, who is selected as ‘person of the year’ by Jordanian Islamic Institute

In 2017, Maulana Mahmood Madani had threatened, "You make the rules (for Triple Talaq), and we will break them."

Maulana Mahmood Madani, the President of Jamiat Ulama-e-Hind (M), has been selected as the ‘person of the year – 2023’ by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre.

The independent research entity recently published the 14th annual issue [pdf] of ‘The Muslim 500: The World’s 500 Most Influential Muslims’ wherein Maulana Mahmood Madani is listed as the ‘Person of the Year- 2023.’

Interestingly, the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre is affiliated with a Jordan-based institution named ‘Royal Aal al-Bayt Institute for Islamic Thought.’ In its annual issue, the research entity heaped praise on Maulana Madani for tackling ‘terrorism’ and ‘Islamophobia’ at the same time.

Screengrab of the report by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre., Page 11

“Through the platform of the JUH, he has fought the twin battles of condemning terrorism in all its forms as well as calling out those who would use the issue to scapegoat the Muslim community,” it claimed while thanking the Deobandi cleric for fighting hundreds of ‘false terror cases’ against Muslims.

The Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre then tried to mislead its readers by falsely claiming about the supposed killing and discrimination of Muslims in India.

“With the ruling BJP party promoting Hindu nationalism—Hindutva—to ever-more harmful levels, Indian Muslims are killed and discriminated against as never before,” it claimed without providing any evidence for the same.

Screengrab of the report by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre, Page 12

Nonetheless, the Islamic research entity applauded the initiative of Maulana Mahmood Madani to track “Islamophobia” by founding JEIM (the Justice and Empowerment Initiative for Indian Muslims).

It also hailed the Deobandi cleric for modernising Islamic seminaries (madrassas), legitimising the madrassa curriculum as equivalent to having secondary level (10th Std) education.

“Maulana Madani is a leading voice in the Indian Muslim community, which is 200 million strong. Their challenges are unprecedented and the success of his work has a major influence on how they fare,” the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre asserted.

Opposition to Uniform Civil Code, threats of creation of another Pakistan

In May this year, the Jamiat-Ulama-e-Hind passed a resolution against the Uniform Civil Code (UCC), which seeks to override Muslim personal laws and enforce uniformity in civil matters.

The resolution was passed during a 2-day program, which saw the participation of 5,000 Muslim organizations, in Deoband in the Saharanpur district of Uttar Pradesh. The resolution claimed that the enactment of UCC would prevent the observance of personal laws, allegedly guaranteed by the Indian Constitution.

“This ignores the true spirit of the Constitution. No Muslim accepts interference in Islamic law. If any government makes the mistake of implementing UCC, Muslims will not accept this injustice and will be forced to take all measures against it while staying within constitutional limits,” the resolution stated.

The Jamiat Ulama-e-Hind has accused the Modi government of patronizing hate mongers and making the lives of Muslims difficult in India. During his address, the President of the Islamic organisation claimed, “We had a chance to go to Pakistan but we did not go. Those who harp on about Pakistan should go there themselves.”

He also alleged that Muslims have been rendered ‘strangers’ in their own country. “We have been maintaining patience but that does not mean that we will bow our heads and accept everything. We can compromise on everything, but not on our faith,” he issued veiled threats during the event.

During the same event, a Jamiat Ulama-e-Hind official threatened that the claim over the Gyanvapi mosque could lead to the creation of another Pakistan.

Maulana Niaz Ahmed Farooqui, who served as the media-in-charge of Jamiat- Ulama-e-Hind, warned, “Hatred is being propelled against Muslims in the country. Pakistan was created the last time there was a tirade of this sort against the Muslims. I don’t understand what exactly these people want.”

Maulana Mahmood Madani demands new law to punish ‘blasphemy’

In August this year, Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind sought “exemplary punishment” for ex-BJP leader T Raja Singh for words reportedly directed at the Islamic prophet, as well as a law to safeguard the integrity of religious icons.

Singh’s remarks were called “very shameful” and “shocking” by Jamiat president Maulana Madani. The latter even released a statement alleging that the governing party’s members were repeating such actions.

Maulana Mahmood Madani stated that the mere expulsion of T Raja from the saffron party was insufficient and that such “perpetrators” should face “exemplary punishment.” He also advocated for the adoption of a new law to safeguard the dignity of religious leaders.

Jamiat Ulama-e-Hind and its support to Waqf Act

In September 2022, Jamiat Ulama-e-Hind moved the Delhi High Court against a petition, which challenged the draconian provisions of the Waqf Act.

As per reports, the Islamic outfit opposed the petition by BJP leader Ashwini Upadhyay and urged the court to hear all State Waqf Boards before passing a verdict on the matter.

The Islamic organisation claimed that the petition would impact the institution of Waqf in the country, which is supposedly based on the Islamic tradition of philanthropy, charity, and merit.

The matter was heard by a 2-Judge Bench of Justices Satish Chandra Sharma and Subramonium Prasad. “The institution of waqf is well recognised in our country with a comprehensive legal mechanism in place for the same,” Jamiat Ulama-e-Hind said in its petition.

It further added, “‘Waqf’ refers to Muslim religious endowments and institutions of various kinds recognised all over the world as an Islamic tradition of merit, charity, and philanthropy.”

The Islamic outfit accused the BJP leader of filing petitions against the practices of the Muslim community and using the legal system as a tool to harass them. “The line of petitions before the courts in India is being used by him as a tool to harass Muslims as a community,” it argued.

“This Hon’ble court, while granting any indulgence to him while entertaining his petition must examine the malafide intent of scrupulous litigants like the present petitioner,” Jamiat Ulama-e-Hind demanded.

When Maulana Madani cast aspersions on survey of unrecognised madarsas in UP

Again in September this year,  Jamiat Ulama-e-Hind criticised the Yogi Adityanath-led-government for “not taking the Islamic community into confidence” first before going ahead with its survey of unrecognised madrasas.

Maulana Mahmood Madani said, “We don’t have a problem with the state surveying the unrecognised madarsas. They just want to know what facilities and what kind of education is being provided to our children. But the state should have taken the Muslim community in confidence.”

As per reports, Maulana Madani also questioned why the state government was only surveying unrecognised madarsas and not other religious educational institutions.

The Islamic outfit opposed CAA, NPR, and Triple Talaq law but extended support to Rohingyas

It must be mentioned that Jamiat Ulama-e-Hind has been a vocal critic of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and had led large-scale protests against the humanitarian law in over 2000 cities and towns across India.

“The use of religion as a criterion for citizenship in the concerned bill would mark a radical break with this history and would be inconsistent with the basic structure of the constitution”, Maulana Mahmood had remarked then.

“This is a temporary phase of hardship and soon the Muslim community will wriggle out of it”, he claimed although the anti-CAA hysteria was instrumental in the culmination of the anti-Hindu Delhi riots of 2020.

Maulana Mahmood Madani protesting against CAA in Jantar Mantar, image via Ummid

Just days ahead of the deadly riots, the Islamic outfit also cast aspersions on the integrity of the National Population Register (NPR). The Madani faction of the Jamiat Ulama-e-Hind called upon the Muslim community to not provide any information about the NPR.

“NPR is the first stage of data collection to prepare NRC as per Citizenship Act 1955 and Citizenship Rule 2003. It is patently discriminatory, divisive, exclusionary and unconstitutional and targets communities on the basis of religion, class, caste, and gender,” the Islamic organisation announced.

During an interview with The Sunday Guardian (TSG) Live in 2018, Maulana Mahmood Madani alleged that the issue of ‘triple talaq’ was being mainstreamed to demonise the Muslim community.

Screengrab of the news report by The Sunday Guardian Live

He had claimed, “…Triple talaq is uncommon among Muslims. A society that doesn’t have the system of talaq feels horror-struck that Muslims have talaq. The way Modiji and Amit Shah spoke of it, it seemed like there is nothing else happening in Muslim households but talaq.”

“Earlier it was the idea of terrorism associated with Muslims—it was as if they kill indiscriminately. Now the notion being spread is that all Muslims are keen to divorce their wives using triple talaq,” he further added.

On being asked about the legislation of a Triple Talaq Bill, he openly vowed to break it in defiance of the Supreme Court order. Maulana Mahmood Madani had threatened, “You make the rules, and we will break them.”

In September 2017, the same organisation had come forward in support of the illegal Rohingyas who were living in the country. While opposing the deportation of their co-religionists to Myanmar, the Delhi division of JuH took out massive protests in the hopes of forcing the government to reconsider their decision.

Maulana Madani was present at the book launch of ’26/11: RSS Ki Saazish’

As early as 2010, Maulana Mahmood Madani was part of the cabal of conspiracy theorists who blamed the deadly 26/11 terror attack on the Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS).

Despite the fact that the Islamic terrorists religiously profiled non-Muslims and targeted them specifically (wherever possible), a concerted campaign was launched to implicate the Hindu community.

Aziz Burney, who was the Group Editor of Sahara Publications like Roznama Rashtriya Sahara, Bazm-e-Sahara, and Aalami Sahara, published a book titled, “26/11 RSS Ki Saazish?” (26/11, An RSS Conspiracy?) in 2010 as part of the sinister agenda.

To give credence to the book written by the then editor-in-chief of Sahara Urdu newspaper, Congress leader Digvijaya Singh and JuH chief Maulana Mahmood Madani were present at the time of the book launch.

It thus comes as no surprise as to why a Jordanian-based Islamic institute, which peddles a false narrative of Muslim genocide in India, chose Maulana Mahmood Madani as the ‘person of the Year 2023.’

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Dibakar Dutta
Dibakar Dutta
Centre-Right. Political analyst. Assistant Editor @Opindia. Reach me at [email protected]

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