THE MEMBERS of the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) have expressed shock and dismay over chairman Maulana Rabe Hasani Nadvi sharing the platform with Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav and other Samajwadi Party leaders at the foundation-laying ceremony of the Maulana Mohammad Ali Jauhar University in Rampur on Monday.
“Never in the past, an AIMPLB chairman attended any political function in the country,” commented a senior member.
Sources in the board said initially the chairman had refused to attend the Rampur function but later he changed his mind. Although Rabe Hasani is a highly respected cleric, the possibility of ‘protest letters’ from the members could not be ruled out.
“His participation could well be presumed as participation of the board in the function,” said another member adding, this might cause consternation among people in the board who belonged to various political parties. “The members will not digest it,” rued another member.
In the past, board chairmen like Syed Abul Hasan Ali Miyan or his successor Mujahidul Islam Qasmi always avoided attending political functions.
Talking to Hindustan Times, another board member Dr Naim Hamid recalled how Rabe Hasani did not attend even the evening function at Yatimkhana in Kanpur on May 7 last because Yadav was invited there in the morning. Rabe Hasani had then argued that it would not be advisable to attend the function at the same venue.
But after a closed-door meeting with the chief minister at Nadwa on July 9, the board chairman attended the Rampur function, where the SP leaders went hammer and tongs against the Congress. “It was improper and had put a question mark on the non-political image of the board,” said a member.
Senior board member Zafaryab Jilani, however, said normally the chairman attended educational functions but the organisers should have been careful about raising political issues in his presence.
Delhi Jama Masjid Imam Ahmad Bukhari however refused to comment on the issue.