Asserting equal right to worship for women and men of all castes and religion, forums such as National Muslim Women’s Welfare Society, People’s Union for Civil liberties (PUCL) along with Haji Ali Sab Ke Liye (HASKL) will organise a national convention in Jaipur later this month.
“We have no animosity towards anyone. The rights granted to us by the Quran cannot be taken away. I have been to Haji Ali Mazhar [grave of the saint] before 2011, but after that, we were not allowed inside. Why the restrictions? The convention will highlight such aspects,” said Nishat Hussein, founder president of National Muslim Women’s Welfare Society, who is also the convenor for Bharatiya Muslim Mahila Andholan (BMMA) in Rajasthan.
An 11-member delegation from Mumbai-based HASKL visited the mazhar of Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti at the Ajmer Sharif dargah on Monday and a 7-minute documentary was also screened. The documentary will be submitted as visual evidence to the trustees of the Haji Ali Dargah.
“The long-standing practice and conventions at every shrine should be maintained and not discontinued by outsiders, the government or public-appointed trustees until there is a problem of law and order or immortal activities,” stated a letter by professor Syed Liaqat H Moini, who is from the family of Khadims at the Ajmer Dargah.
Earlier this month, activist Trupti Desai, who supports the Haji Ali Sab Ke Liye (HASKL) forum, visited the Haji Ali Dargah till the inner sanctum and gave an ultimatum to the trustees to re-allow women to enter the mazhar
The Bharatiya Muslim Mahila Andholan, Mumbai, has filed a PIL on the issue and is now awaiting the judgement, which is likely to be pronounced on July 25. “We are hopeful the verdict will be positive for us,” said Varsha Vidya Vilas, a member of HASKL.