ALL-INDIA SHIA Personal Law Board (AISPLB) chairman Maulana Mirza Mohd Athar on Monday opposed public demonstration in protest against Pope’s statement against Prophet Muhammad.
Athar also called upon the people to close the controversy as the Pope had already apologised on the issue. He said such issues should be debated and settled peacefully.
The AISPLB chairman said such street demonstrations had all the potential to put the Shia community in difficulty as the outside forces could create a law and order problem. While addressing board meeting here on Monday, Athar indirectly referring to the demonstration by rival group led by Maulana Kalbe Jawad last Friday on the Pope issue, said that the board members could take up the matter by discussing it amongst themselves.
Athar also constituted a five-member committee to monitor all the issues related to Islam, particularly to the Shia community.
He also said that the Pope issue should not be unnecessarily dragged. The board would write to the religious leaders and other organisations to pardon the Pope, he added.
Athar said Muslims sentiments had been hurt by the Pope’s statement but the reply should be through debate. The board invited the Pope for an open debate to understand Islam. He said such debate could also help in avoid prevailing misunderstanding about Islam. Expressing concern over murder of a Somalian nun in violence following the Pope’s comments, the AISPLB chief said there was no place for violence and terrorism in Islam. He said Muslims should restrain themselves on the issue.