Muslim body says Yoga is unacceptable

AIMPLB mobilises support against Modi government.

Updated - November 16, 2021 04:58 pm IST

Published - June 25, 2015 01:40 am IST - LUCKNOW:

Muslims perform yoga during the International Yoga Day in Ahmedabad.

Muslims perform yoga during the International Yoga Day in Ahmedabad.

Having already registered its opposition to the Modi government’s move on “imposing” yoga and Surya Namaskar , the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) has now decided to create awareness among the Muslim masses, mobilise their opinion and rope in the support of secular elements for its cause.

The Board had made it clear in its annual convention in Jaipur and the executive committee meeting in Lucknow on June 7 that Surya Namaskar and yoga, along with the recitation of the Bhagvad Gita, were not acceptable to Muslims.

The Acting General Secretary of the Law Board, Maulana Wali Rehmani, has written to Muslim organisations and Board members apprising them of its views on yoga and Surya Namaskar and why Muslims should oppose the move.

In the two-page letter dated June 15, Maulana Rehmani said that Muslims should shun Surya Namaskar and yoga.

The Board’s apprehensions about imposition of a “Hindutva agenda” through yoga had been reinforced by the massive hype leading up to the International Day of Yoga celebrations, it said.

‘Creating confusion’

Some Board members felt that since the Modi government had “failed on all fronts”, the Yoga Day hype had been an attempt to divert the attention of the people. “There seems to be an attempt to create confusion among the people on crucial issues,” said Board member Qasim Rasool Ilyas from Delhi.

Board executive committee member and legal adviser Zafaryab Jilani said Maulana Rehmani’s letter basically aims at creating awareness among Muslims as there seems to be a lot of confusion on what exactly is meant by yoga and Surya Namaskar .

“The Law Board is clear that making yoga and Surya Namaskar compulsory in government schools is unconstitutional and violative of Article 28,” Mr. Jilani said.

Commenting on the Board’s attack on the government, Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader Ashok Singhal told PTI that “Vedic culture” and “Sanatan Dharma” were the roots of the country and nobody could stop them.

Muslim Law Board plans to rope in ‘like-minded’ people

Notwithstanding its strong views on yoga and ‘surya namaskar’, the All India Muslim Personal Law Board is determined to solicit the support of like-minded people in its campaign against what it sees is an attempt by the Modi government to push its ‘Hindutva agenda.’

“People believing in justice and rule of law would be roped in,” AIMPLB executive committee member and legal adviser, Zafaryab Jilani, said.

The board is also determined not to allow the issue to be converted into a communal one.

“Secular elements and people from other faiths would be asked to join our cause,” said AIMPLB member Qasim Rasool Ilyas.

In its opposition to making yoga and “surya namaskar” mandatory, the board seems to have found an ally in the

Uttar Pradesh Urban Development Minister, Mohammad Azam Khan.

Mr. Khan has urged the board to launch a movement on the issue. The Minister, who is known as the “Muslim face” of the ruling Samajwadi Party, had condemned the Central government for converting the International Yoga Day “into a religious day.”

This article is corrected for a factual error

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