In a major setback to All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB), its senior vice-president and a prominent Shia cleric Dr Kalbe Sadiq on Sunday attended the annual conference of the rival All India Shia Personal Law Board.
Even though Dr Sadiq fell short of announcing his resignation from the AIMPLB, he made it clear that Shia community was feeling neglected in the AIMPLB. Skipping the question whether he had resigned from AIMPLB, Dr Sadiq told HT “four marriages are allowed in Islam.”
He said there were 14 Shia members in AIMPLB but except few others never turned up for the meeting. “They (non-Shia members) neglect us and we don’t move ahead”, Dr Sadiq said. He was however quite guarded in his comments. Dr Sadiq had in the past caused flutter in AIMPLB by supporting family planning method to control population problem.
His arrival came as surprise to nearly 500 Shia ulema (clerics) who had gathered from all over the country to participate in two-day deliberations of the board. Significantly, Dr Sadiq, who has long been associated Sunni-dominated multi-sect AIMPLB, also associated himself with the resolutions passed at the Shia board. The resolution included sharp attack on Saudi Arabia government.
His presence at the conference has already caused ripples in AIMPLB. However sources said that Dr Sadiq had long been feeling disenchanted with the functioning of the AIMPLB. Dr Sadiq, who repeatedly claimed that he had a formula for amicable solution to the vexed Babri Masjid-Ramjanma Bhoomi issue, was also not reportedly happy with the way AIMPLB dealt with the issue after September 30, 2010 verdict of High Court in the matter.
Dr Sadiq said Shia board resolution condemning Al-Qaida and Taliban-led terrorism was fully justified. “ I fully support the resolutions passed at the Shia board conference”, he said.
Ever since its establishment five years ago Shia board had been condemning the functioning of AIMPLB. The Shia board had also been issuing repeated calls for unit of Shia clerics. The presence of Dr Sadiq at the conference is thus being seen as beginning of departure of Shia clerics from AIMPLB. The Barievly Sunni sect has also formed a separate All India Muslim Personal Law Board jadid (modern).