Veteran Bollywood scriptwriter Salim Khan, the father of actor Salman Khan, on Friday questioned a fatwa, religious edict, against him by some Muslim organizations for celebrating Ganeshotsav at their home in Mumbai.
“What is the locus standi of these people? Who are they to question people's religious beliefs? Why don't they issue such a 'fatwa' against terrorists and terrorism, which is un-Islamic? The clerics are talking nonsense,” he thundered before a television channel on Friday evening.
Mufti Manjar Hassan Khan Ashrafi Misbahi, the chief of Darul-Uloom Hijaziya Chishti, Mumbai, issued the 'fatwa' urging a religious boycott of the entire Khan family on Wednesday.
Last week, the Khan family was in the limelight when all members along with friends and relations celebrated the Ganeshotsav festival at their home in Bandra, northwest Mumbai.
The Khans celebrate Ganeshotsav every year, but this time, the live telecast of the family performing 'aarti' (invocation) of Lord Ganesh has irked some community leaders. Later, the family took part in a ceremonial immersion of the idol of Lord Ganesh.
The social boycott call was issued in response to a demand by Abdul Rehman Anjaria, member of the Advisory Council, Jama Masjid, New Delhi.
Anjaria, who is also member All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB), told IANS Friday evening that the 'fatwa' would be in force until Khan and his family atone for their actions of worshipping an idol of Lord Ganesh, which is not permitted in Islam.
Referring to Salim Khan's outburst against the fatwa, Anjaria said they would call for certified tapes of his comments from the TV channel soon.
“Depending on what he has said, the community elders may go for stringent action against the Khans, including a social boycott,” Anjaria explained.
According to Anjaria, Maulana Abdus Salam Bin Qasmi, president, Jamiat-Ul-Ulema-Hind, Mumbai, and Maulana Nizamuddin Ashrafi, principal, Darul Uloom Ali Hassain Ali Sunnat, Mumbai, who is also a member of AIMPLB, have also supported the 'fatwa'.
Despite repeated attempts by IANS, Salim and Salman Khan were not available for their comments in the matter.
Last year too Salman Khan had been issued a similar 'fatwa' by a Lucknow-based organization of Muslim clerics for joining the Ganeshotsav celebrations.
Justifying the decision to celebrate Ganeshotsav, Salim said his wife (Salman's mother) is a Maharashtrian Hindu and “worshipping Lord Ganesh is in my blood”.