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07 May 2012

Bukhari effect: Jawwad ready with his wishlist for Shias

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Lucknow: After Delhi Jama Masjid’s Shahi Imam Syed Ahmed Bukhari, now it is the turn of Shia cleric and member of All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) Kalbe Jawwad to demand more representation for Shia community in government bodies and minority welfare schemes.


To stress the demands, Jawwad will organise a Shia convention at historical Asafi Imambara in Lucknow on Sunday. For the first time, hoardings of the convention have been put up strategically at Vikramaditya Marg (Samajwadi Party Office) and Golf Club crossing (Chief Minister’s residence). The convention will pass a resolution, which will be forwarded to the state government and the Centre.


“When the demands of a Imam from Delhi (read: Bukhari) are met with the government succumbing to pressure, they should also consider the community which had voted them to power,” said Jawwad.


Demands by Muslim clerics in Lucknow is nothing new. Earlier, a similar attempt was made during the Shia convention organised on October 29, 2011 by another Shia group — All India Shia Personal Law Board (AISPLB) headed by Mirza Mohd Athar. The demand was same — more political representation to Shias in the form of tickets by political parties during the elections. However, the convention failed to make any mark.


During the Assembly elections, vice-president of AIMPLB Dr Kalbe Sadiq’s son Kalbe Hussain had joined the SP. After the SP was voted to power, Dr Sadiq wrote to Mulayam Singh Yadav claiming that the whole Shia community has voted him to power and that they should be given their share.


The SP leadership has not responded to the demand.


Jawwad will again place his demand for 20 percent reservation to Shia community in various minority welfare schemes. “The Shia community is ignored and their interests are overlooked by the state and central government. The community does not figure anywhere in the welfare schemes for minorities,” said Kalbe Jawwad.


The cleric claimed that as the Shia community is scattered and does not constitute any vote bank, they are ignored by political parties and governments. “We will soon undertake a census of Shia community and then present the exact figures to the government and demand the rightful due for the community,” said Jawwad.


Lately, Jawwad has been facing the heat on charges of selling grave land at a premium in a waqf graveyard and leasing out land of the graveyard to a hospital under his control. The Shia Waqf Board has even issued a notice to him in this regard. Jawwad, who has a sizeable following among the Shia community in Lucknow, is presently mutawalli of eight waqf properties in the city. Jawwad, meanwhile, claimed he himself was waging a battle to safeguard waqf properties.


(Courtesy: The Indian Express)

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