Kanthapuram biggest challenge: leaders

The Samastha Kerala Jamiyyathul Ulama, a body of traditional Sunni scholars, will celebrate its 85th anniversary from Thursday. The four-day celebrations to be held at Varakkal Mullakoya Thangal Nagar at Kooriyad near Tirurangadi will be the biggest show of strength in recent years by the Sunni group opposing Kanthapuram A.P. Aboobacker Musliar.

“The breakaway Sunni faction of Kanthapuram is our biggest challenge today,” said Kottumala T.M. Bapu Musliar, Samastha joint-secretary and general convener of the programme, here on Monday.

He said the Kanthapuram faction had engaged in misguiding the masses in the name of holy relics. However, he said there were only organisational, not ideological, differences with the Kanthapuram faction.

He said the Samastha would resist any move by reformist organisations to lead astray the Muslim masses from the path of Ahlu Sunnath Wal Jamaat .

Samastha leaders said that the mega anniversary celebrations, being held after a gap of 15 years, would be a testimony to the mass support base the Sunni organisation enjoyed among the Muslims in Kerala.

Elaborate arrangements have been made at the dried-up paddy fields adjacent to National Highway 17 at Kooriyad. Large thatched shamianas have been erected with facilities to contain 25,000 delegates at the camp.

Cherussery Zainuddin Musliar, Samastha general secretary and reception committee chairman, said that the camp would occupy an area of three lakh sq ft. There will be 300 temporary toilets, 300 bathrooms, dozens of sumps for ablutions, resting place, and other facilities for delegates.

The stage can accommodate 500 guests, said Mr. Bapu Musliar. As many as 2,500 volunteers will be pressed into service.

Samastha leaders said that scholars from different countries would attend the celebrations, which would witness release of 85 books analysing Islamic reformist movements in the State.

Mr. Bapu Musliar said that they expected 25 lakh people to attend the four-day celebrations. More than 5,000 vehicles have already been booked for the concluding session to be held on Sunday evening, he said.

Minister for Panchayats and Social Welfare M.K. Muneer inaugurated an Islamic exhibition at the venue on Monday. The exhibition will conclude with the culmination of the celebrations.

Samastha leaders will carry the organisation's flag and the mast in separate rallies to be taken out on Wednesday. Senior leader Parannur P.P. Ibrahim Musliar will hoist the flag on Thursday morning. Syed Sadikali Shihab Thangal will inaugurate the celebrations.

  • Four-day celebrations to begin on Thursday

  • Kanthapuram faction accused of misguiding masses