BSP leader Haji Iqbal takes part in yajna, stokes row

Some Muslim leaders termed the yajna as un-Islamic and asked him to ‘seek forgiveness from Allah’.
File photo of Glocal University in Saharanpur.(Livehindustan photo)
File photo of Glocal University in Saharanpur.(Livehindustan photo)
Published on Oct 22, 2017 11:30 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, Lucknow | By, Lucknow

Former legislator of the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) Haji Iqbal has stoked a controversy by performing a yajna at a university in Saharanpur.

Some Muslim leaders termed the yajna as un-Islamic and asked him to “seek forgiveness from Allah”. Haji Iqbal owns the Glocal University in Saharanpur where a yajna was organised as part of Dhanwantari Puja on October 18, a day before Diwali.

Haji Iqbal was present at the ceremony and a video of the yajna was circulated on the social media. University sources said the yajna was held following a directive from the central government that all Ayurveda institutes should hold such a programme on Dhanvantari Day.

Haji is already under the scanner for his rags to riches story. The enforcement directorate as well as the income tax department are investigating into his assets.

The religious ritual created a flutter in some sections of the Muslim community.

“It is un-Islamic on the part of Haji Iqbal to organise the ritual. He should seek forgiveness from Allah. Each religious has a certain code and one should not flout it,” state president of the All-India Imam Association Mufti Zulfikar said.

Dar-ul-Uloom Deoband, however, distanced itself from the controversy. Deoband’s Naib Mohatmeen Mohd Abul Khaliqh refused to comment on the issue.

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