Does Sahih Buhkari Hadith Explain the Quran?

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 29 April 2012 | Posted in , , ,

By Fazlur Raheman Shaikh

[Quran 69:43 43 (This is) a Message sent down from the Lord of the Worlds.
44 And if the apostle were to invent any sayings in Our name,
45 We should certainly seize him by his right hand,
46 And We should certainly then cut off the artery of his heart:
47 Nor could any of you withhold him (from Our wrath). 48 But verily this is a Message for the Allah.fearing.

In Quran, Allah Prohibits the messenger not add anything in the name of Allah and he obeyed this commandment of Allah. While after 200 years all of a sudden four so called Imams emerged and started to collect so called hearsay (પૂર્વજો પાસેથી સાંભળેલી વાતો, கேள்வியறிவு , सुनी हुई बात, سنی سنائ بات,  شنید,  الإشاعة

And developed new science of collecting and writing hearsay(they termed it as HADIS and they labeled them to believe as equal to Quran!! 140,000 Sahaba (R.A.) was with Hazrat Mohamed (S.A W.) in his last Hajj. There are not a single documentary evidence that anyone dared to write anything. 4 Calipha of Islam did not venture to write, teach or tabliq anything but Quran and purely Quran. They could have appointed thousands scholars to write volumes of Ahadis as they were the kings. Almost after 7 to 8 generation in order to gain cheap popularity and in the false name of Din (to Please Allah for New Innovation) these 4 Imam not only fabricated din but divided the Umma into 4 sects.

The advocates of hadith are fond of saying that the hadith explains the Quran without which, they say the Quran cannot be understood. In other words without hadith they will have to reject the Quran or at least ignore it. The scholars also say that the hadith they call "Sahih Bukhary" is the best hadith.

It can be easily proved that the hadith does not in any way explain the Quran and that the "Sahih Bukhari" is not worth the papers it is printed on.

For evidence please refer to, and check all references of "Sahih Al-Bukhary" by Dr. Muhammed Muhsin Khan, Islamic University, Medina Al-Munawwara. Publisher "Kitab Bhavan, New Delhi, which is the Nine volume encyclopedia. Vol. 6 of "Sahih Al-Bukhary" is devoted to the explanation of the Quran (Tafsir). The other eight volumes prescribe things like drinking camels urine to cure fevers (vol 7, hadith no 590), burning people first and then their houses if they do not go the mosque on time, (vol.1, hadith no.626), dreaming of undressing women (vol 9, hadith no.139 and 140), using shoes to garland camels (Vol 2, hadith no 763), and other such non-sense.

But let us focus on Vol. 6: the explanation of the Quran by Imam Bukhary. Although the Quran has 114 suras or chapters, Bukhari does not explain all the verses in all the suras.Sura 2, Al Baqarah has 286 verses, but Bukhari only provides hadith for about 50 verses. This is slightly over 20% of Al Baqarah. Bukhari has left the Ulamma groping the dark over the remaining 80%.

Sura AL Kauther (Sura 108) is the shortest sura in the Quran, only 3 verses. However Bukhari "attempts" to explain the meaning of just one word "Kauther" as sufficient to explain this whole Sura. Bukhari says; "Kauther" is a river in heaven.

But simply, "Kauther" means "good in abundance". (Translation by President of Islamic research, IFAT, Saudi Arabia). This also suggests that Imam Bukhari did not know Arabic. It is a fact that Bukhari was a Persian from Bukhara and his mother tongue was Farsi. The scholars have no records to show when Bukhari learned Arabic. More about this later.

The greatest surprise of all is that 28 suras of the Quran are NOT "explained" at all. The sura numbers are as follows; 23, 27, 29, 35, 51, 57, 58, 64, 67, 69, 70, 73, 76, 81, 82, 86, 88, 89, 90, 94, 100, 101, 103, 104, 105, 106, 107, and 109. Bukhari explains this away as follows "no hadith were mentioned here."

According to the scholars only the Prophet is supposed to be the source of the hadith. The hadith is supposed to explain the Quran. The BIG question is, "Who went on un authorized holiday for 28 WHOLE SURAS of the Quran ?!!!

The scholars insist that the hadith explains the Quran. Hence the scholars have to do away with 28 SURAS of the Quran because Bukhari did not explain these 28 SURAS..
Therefore the boast by the scholars that those who uphold the QURAN ALONE and do NOT depend on the hadith at all, cannot understand the Quran, falls FLAT on its face. The scholars are in a far worse situation. 28 Suras are missing and none of the other suras are explained in full by Bukhari.

To revert to the earlier point that the Persian Bukhari may not have known Arabic, this is suggested by the way Bukhari has changed the names of certain SURAS. By itself this is a strange phenomenon. The scholars themselves do NOT know why Bukhary did this.
Non-Arabs sometimes refer to a Sura by its first verse. This is because they may not have known the Arabic name for the SURA because they are not scholars of the Quran or simply because they are not Arabs. Bukhari displays the same characteristics.

Sura Al Naba (Sura 68) is labelled as Sura "Amma yatasa'alun", this is actually part of the first verse of the sura.. Sura Al Baiyina (Sura 98) is labelled as Sura "Lam Yakun". Again the beginning verses. Sura Al Takwir (Sura 81) is labelled Sura "Idhash Shamsu Kuwirat". This is the start of the first verse again. Sura Al Maarij (sura 70) is labelled Sura "Sa'ala Sa'ilun".
Some SURAS have been given two names. Sura Al Insan (Sura 76) is labelled Sura "Hal-Ata-insani" or Sura "Dahr".

But this is a revealing point because such labeling is more akin to reciters who are not Arabs, who do not know the Arabic language. Apart from the fact that Bukhari was Persian from Bukhara many scholars believe that he was also blind. The next question is "WHO WROTE the Sahih Bukhari?!" It will also be pertinent to see how Bukhari handles some of the explanations of the verses-if and when he cares to explain them.

For example some explanations end with a blank space.: Vol 6, Hadith number 50 seeks to explain Sura 2:223. After some narration it continues like this; Nafi' added regarding the verse: "So go to your tilth when or how you will. Ibn Umar said; " It means one should approach his wife in........" The explanation ends with a blank space. But not to worry. A footnote completes the picture. The footnote says "Al Bukhary left a blank space here because he was not sure of what Ibn Umar had said !." And yet this called "Sahih Al Bukhary" Perhaps this is why some scholars have much problems in this department.

There is also one of the most foolish and incredible explanation by Bukhari for Sura 11:5. The beautiful meaning of the verse is actually :11:4 "To God is your return and He has power over all things." 11:5 "Behold ! They fold up their hearts, that they may be hid from him. Ah! Even when they cover themselves with their garments. He knows what they conceal, and what they reveal. For He knows well the (innermost secrets) of the hearts."11:6 There is no moving creature on earth but its substance depends on God; He knows its resting place and its temporary deposit. All is in a clear Record." Translation by Presidency of Islamic Research, IFTA, Saudi Arabia..

This meaning is crystal clear. We all answer to God. There is nothing we can conceal from God. Every single thing that we do is in a clear Record. "Kitaab-un Maubeen". So do not think you can hide anything from God.

Now, here is Bukhari's ridiculous explanation of the same verse in 11:5. Vol. 6 Hadith no. 203: Narrated Muhammed bin Abbad bin Jaafar that he heard Ibn Abbas reciting: " No doubt! they fold up their breasts." 11:5 and asked him about the explanation. He said, "Some people used to hide themselves while answering the call of nature in an open space lest they be exposed to the sky, so the above revelation was sent down regarding them.

According to Bukhari, the whole purpose of this narration was to tell the Sahaba that God could see them defecating and sleeping in the desert!. According to Bukhari's logic then, after this verse was revealed, the Sahaba who travelled with their wives in the desert lost all their inhibitions, since God could see them anyway. No need to hide anything.

Similarly Bukhari twists Sura 5:87. To explain "5:87" Bukhari first quotes it partially only, not in full, as follows : "O you who believe DO NOT make unlawful the good things which God has made for you" 5:87

The explanation by Bukhari (Vol.6 Hadith no. 139) is as follows : Narrated Abdullah "We used to participate in holy wars conducted by the prophet and we had no women with us. So, we said (to the prophet) "Shall we castrate ourselves "? But the prophet forbade us to do that and therefore he allowed us to marry a woman temporarily) by giving her even a garment, and then the prophet recited. "O you who believe ! Do not make unlawful for you...."There is a footnote "Temporary marriage (Mut'a) was allowed in the early days of Islam., but later, at the time of the Khaibar Battle, it was prohibited (God knows it better)."

The uncertainty in the footnote lends support to the fact that this is an evil lie against God and the prophet by Bukhari.

Sura 5:87 is actually as follows: [Quran 5:87] O you who believe, do not prohibit good things that are made lawful by God, and do not aggress; God dislikes the aggressors.

Is prostitution an excess? Worse than that it is an evil. Which Muslim scholar will allow his daughter to receive "even a garment" as a payment for temporarily servicing the lusts of some Sahaba ? Note how the Bukhari has the sahaba coolly suggesting "Shall we castrate ourselves ?" as though it is done every morning after breakfast.

In Sura 24:33 God and the messenger told us: [Quran 24:33] Those who cannot afford to get married shall maintain morality until God provides for them from His grace. Those among your servants who wish to be freed in order to marry, you shall grant them their wish, once you realize that they are honest. And give them from God's money that He has bestowed upon you. You shall not force your girls to commit prostitution, seeking the materials of this world, if they wish to be chaste. If anyone forces them, then God, seeing that they are forced, is Forgiver, Merciful.

In other words, do not look for sex outside marriage. If you cannot marry, it is better to keep chaste. Control your lust. The messenger said do not force anyone into prostitution, but instead Bukhari says the messenger set the price for hanky panky at merely a piece of garment. This is Bukhari's malicious lie against the Messenger. In truth the messenger told his men to control their lusts : Sura 24:30 "Say to the believing men that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty, that will be better purity for them, and God knows all that they do."

If anyone insisted on following their lusts, the Messenger would have told them " God doth wish to turn to you, but the wish of those who follow their lusts is that you should turn away from them, far away " Sura 4:27 (All translation from Presidency of Islamic Research, IFTA- Saudi Arabia).
The Quran is crystal clear. But Bukhari says you can but a woman for a price of cloth. Perhaps the scholars are gleeful at this suggestion also.

Here is another hadith that has neither head nor tail, It is started under "The book of the Virtues of the Quran". May God saves us. Vol 6, hadith No 503. Narrated Valium Utham. "I was informed that Gabriel came to the prophet while Um Salma was with him. Gabriel started talking (to the prophet). Then the prophet asked Um Salma, "Who is this ? " She replied "He is Dihya (AlKalbi). When Gabriel had left Um Salma said; "By God, I did not take him for anybody other than him ( i.e. Dihya) till I heard the sermon of the prophet wherein he informed about the news of Gabriel." The subnarrator asked Utham : From whom have you heard that ? Utham said "From Usama Binzaid". God sent Gabriel with the revelations to be delivered to Muhammed. Therefore Gabriel delivered the revelations to Muhammed. But here Bukhari says the prophet did not know Gabriel had come to him. Instead he asks his wife !!. Was the prophet's wife a Messenger also, such that she could hear Gabriel?And she calls him strange names like Dihya and Al Kalbi.

There is some confusion. Is God that inefficient that His angel Gabriel is called Dihya and Kalbi, all in the course of duty of delivering revelations to His messenger Muhammed ?

Let us see 2:97-98: "Say, who is an enemy to Gabriel for he brings the revelation to thy heart by God's will, a confirmation of what went before. And Guidance and glad tidings for those who believe. Who ever is an enemy to God and His angels and prophets, to Gabriel and Michael, Lo..! God is an enemy to those who reject faith. "

Gabriel brings the revelation straight into the prophet's heart (alaiqa Qalbika bi idhnillah) with God's permission. But Bukhary says Gabriel just started talking and the Prophet did not know who it was. He had to ask his wife...!

[Quran 26:192-195] This is a revelation from the Lord of the universe. The Honest Spirit (Gabriel) came down with it. To reveal it into your heart, that you may be one of the warners. In a perfect Arabic tongue.

Gabriel brought the revelation straight to the Prophet's heart . But Bukhari says the prophet had to ask his wife of Gabriel : "WHO IS THIS ?"

It is easy to refute the Christian argument by referring to his own Bible. In a similar way the "muslim" scholar who insists on giving eminence to fabricated hadith can be countered by referring to his own books written by the hands of their leaders like Imam Bukhari, without God's permission.

In Sura Al Baqarah, Allah says: [Quran 2:79] Therefore, woe to those who distort the scripture with their own hands, then say, "This is what God has revealed," seeking a cheap material gain. Woe to them for such distortion, and woe to them for their illicit gains.

As stated earlier the hadith of Bukhari is not worth the paper it is printed on. By following such ludicrous hadith which clearly taint the good name of the Prophet Muhammed, the Muslims have been lost for over 1000 years now. They can only recall the glorious days of the Prophet. Little do they realize that during the glorious days there was no hadith. There was only the Quran.

Whenever you want to pursue the truth and verify anything you hear about Islam, we urge you to please use the only valid and divine source of Islam, Quran.

[Fazlur Raheman Shaikh can be contacted at imoh34@gmail.com]

Dallas Muslim scholar, Dr. Kavakci, reveals misconceptions about Shariah laws

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | | Posted in , , , ,

By Dina Malki

Irving-based Radio Azad’s Nikhat Qureshi presented a distinguished radio show on “Islamophobia and defending Shariah law” on Sunday, April 22. One of her guests was the Muslim scholar, Dr. Yusuf Zia Kavakci, a Dallas prominent scholar-in-residence and Imam at Richardson’s Islamic Association of North Texas, and one of several North American Muslims included in the “500 most influential Muslims in the world.” Dr. Kavakci explained the history of the development and practice of Shariah, Islamic law, in Classical Islam and in the contemporary world, shedding the light on facts and misconceptions about Muslim penal codes, Muslim countries claiming to be practicing Shariah, and the compatibility of Shariah with the American constitution.

Dr. Kavakci was born in 1938 in Turkey. At the age of 9, he completed the memorization of the whole Qur’an. After completing training in Islamic sciences he became a nationally accredited Mufti (ordained and authorized to give Fatwa-religious opinion- and religious verdict in the Islamic field,) and he worked several religious positions like Imam and Waiz (preacher). Dr. Kavakci received a Bachelor degree in Law from the College of Law of Istanbul University and in Islamic Studies from the Institute of Higher Islamic Studies. He received his Ph.D. in Islamic History and Culture from the Faculty of Arts in Istanbul University. He worked as Assistant Professor and Associate Professor in the Institute of Islamic Research at Istanbul University, and helped establish the first College of Islamic Studies in modern Turkey, now part of Ataturk University. He has practiced law in Iraq, Libya, and Saudi Arabia. He has a number of books published in English and is working on several works in progress. For more details about Dr. Kavakci’s works and biography, please visit the IANT website from which this brief introduction was quoted.

Shariah literally means the road, path to water, Dr. Kavakci stated. It includes “the laws, rules and regulations, drawn from the Quran and Hadith (Prophet Muhammad’s sayings and tradition), understood [by Muslim jurists], and made applicable [in human relations pertaining to everyday’s living and worship rituals.]”These laws empower people before life [i.e. rules concerning the rights of a fetus in its mother’s womb], through life, and after death [i.e. burial rites.] Shariah covers moral values, family relations, respect of parents and elders, human transactions, worship, charity, etc…In a nut shell, Shariah “covers all of a human being’s actions and deeds.”

Through this overview of Shariah, Dr. Kavakci has already confronted misconceptions, like the false statement that Shariah is only about penal codes. As a matter of fact, “less than 10 percent of Shariah” is considered penal codes of crimes and offenses, like theft and highway robbery, clearly mentioned in the Quran. The rest of the Shariah laws, over 90 percent, are left to Muslim jurists to analyze and determine their legal rulings. In addition, Dr. Kavakci stated that penal code is only a part of the whole Islamic law, which also includes secular public and civil laws, all of which is left to democracy to handle; democracy here understood as the agreement of Muslim scholars.

As a practicing lawyer, Dr. Kavakci made another outstanding statement: “85 percent of American laws practices, like family laws in Texas, fit Shariah” because they are “done by the people, for the people, despite some discrepancies.” While Dr. Kavakci believes that American laws live in harmony with Shariah laws, he assured that “no country today applies Shariah as it should be applied, including Saudi Arabia.” He blamed resources monopoly and lack of democratic structures to the failures of political structures in the Muslim world and hence to the lack of authentic practice of Shariah thereby. Moreover, those countries claiming to apply Shariah miss the application of human rights in particular. Muslim countries’ constitutions in modern times are the result of the post-colonization modernity movement and institution of the nation state, and thus, are borrowed from European civil codes. For example, Egypt’s civil codes are copied from French civil codes that worked well for the French, but when they were hastily translated into Arabic to be received in Muslim and Arab countries, many words were wrongly translated to a large degree. Dr. Kavakci noted that what Muslims have done with such European laws was to just Islamize terms and words; the civil codes currently used in the Muslim world are Western influence, where Muslim countries picked and chose what to borrow and what to leave out. 

“Muslims don’t know Islamic law,” Dr. Kavakci concluded. Muslims need to first learn their religious tradition and then become good citizens and help everyone, in hopes for fighting hate, phobias, and misunderstanding. “No to ignorance,” he declared. “It is the mother of all evils.” He urged Muslims to seek scholarly knowledge and renew their faith in a brotherly, friendly and knowledgeable practice.

(Courtesy: Examiner)

Egypt’s women urge MPs not to pass early marriage, sex-after-death laws: report

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | | Posted in , , , , , ,

By Abeer Tayel

Egypt’s National Council for Women (NCW) has appealed to the Islamist-dominated parliament not to approve two controversial laws on the minimum age of marriage and allowing a husband to have sex with his dead wife within six hours of her death according to a report in an Egyptian newspaper.

The appeal came in a message sent by Dr. Mervat al-Talawi, head of the NCW, to the Egyptian People’s Assembly Speaker, Dr. Saad al-Katatni, addressing the woes of Egyptian women, especially after the popular uprising that toppled president Hosni Mubarak in February 2011.

She was referring to two laws: one that would legalize the marriage of girls starting from the age of 14 and the other that permits a husband to have sex with his dead wife within the six hours following her death.

According to Egyptian columnist Amro Abdul Samea in al-Ahram, Talawi’s message included an appeal to parliament to avoid the controversial legislations that rid women of their rights of getting education and employment, under alleged religious interpretations.

“Talawi tried to underline in her message that marginalizing and undermining the status of women in future development plans would undoubtedly negatively affect the country’s human development, simply because women represent half the population,” Abdul Samea said in his article.

The controversy about a husband having sex with his dead wife came about after a Moroccan cleric spoke about the issue in May 2011.

Zamzami Abdul Bari said that marriage remains valid even after death adding that a woman also too had the same right to engage in sex with her dead husband.

Two years ago, Zamzami incited further controversy in Morocco when he said it was permissible for pregnant women to drink alcohol.

But it seems his view on partners having sex with their deceased partners has found its way to Egypt one year on.

Egyptian prominent journalist and TV anchor Jaber al-Qarmouty on Tuesday referred to Abdul Samea’s article in his daily show on Egyptian ON TV and criticized the whole notion of “permitting a husband to have sex with his wife after her death under a so-called ‘Farewell Intercourse’ draft law.”

“This is very serious. Could the panel that will draft the Egyptian constitution possibly discuss such issues? Did Abdul Samea see by his own eyes the text of the message sent by Talawi to Katatni? This is unbelievable. It is a catastrophe to give the husband such a right! Has the Islamic trend reached that far? Is there really a draft law in this regard? Are there people thinking in this manner?”

Many members of the newly-elected, and majority Islamist parliament, have been accused of launching attacks against women’s rights in the country.

They wish to cancel many, if not most, of the laws that promote women’s rights, most notably a law that allows a wife to obtain a divorce without obstructions from her partner. The implementation of the Islamic right to divorce law, also known as the Khula, ended years of hardship and legal battles women would have to endure when trying to obtain a divorce.

Egyptian law grants men the right to terminate a marriage, but grants women the opportunity to end an unhappy or abusive marriages without the obstruction of their partner. Prior to the implementation of the Khula over a decade ago, it could take 10 to 15 years for a woman to be granted a divorce by the courts.

Islamist members of Egyptian parliament, however, accuse these laws of “aiming to destroy families” and have said it was passed to please the former first lady of the fallen regime, Suzanne Mubarak, who devoted much of her attention to the issues of granting the women all her rights.

The parliamentary attacks on women’s rights has drawn great criticism from women’s organizations, who dismissed the calls and accused the MPs of wishing to destroy the little gains Egyptian women attained after long years of organized struggle.

(Courtesy: Al Arabiya News)

Robbers disguised as Muslim women hit Philadelphia banks

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | | Posted in , ,

Muslim leaders fear use of the disguises could put Muslim women in danger or make them objects of scrutiny. They've offered a $20,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the robbers.

By Michael Muskal

A string of bank robberies, carried out by people disguised in traditional Islamic woman's garb, has prompted concerns among religious, government and law-enforcement officials in the Philadelphia area.

The robberies, at least five since December, were carried out by people wearing full-length robes and veils to hide hair and part of the face, according to some surveillance tapes broadcast by local TV stations in Philadelphia. Muslim leaders fear use of the disguises could put Muslim women in danger or make them objects of scrutiny.

The Muslim leaders offered a $20,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the robbers.

The use of Muslim disguises seems to be contained to the Philadelphia area, according to Muslim groups and law-enforcement officials.

In the past, bank security officials elsewhere raised concerns about the potential for Muslim headscarves to hide identity, Amina Rubin, a spokeswoman for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, said by telephone from Washington, D.C.

They were worried that the scarves might hide faces from security cameras; when shown that the scarves don't do that, they were satisfied, she said.

In the Philadelphia case, the robbers tried to hide their identity as much as possible, also wearing face veils.

Although the only recent reports involving Muslim attire designed to hide the identity come from that area, a council official said there may have been a handful of similar reports over the years from elsewhere.

The robberies and disguises have reignited concerns that arose from the radical Islamic attack against the United States on Sept. 11, 2001.

Civil-rights groups have warned that some Muslims have been targeted for surveillance and investigation since then.

There is a danger that the disguised robbers could inflame ethnic tensions. "These type of cowards set us back," Philadelphia Councilman Curtis Jones Jr. said.

(Courtesy: The Seattle Times)

Muslims on Wall Street: Pragmatic over dogmatic

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | | Posted in , , , ,

They have been around for many years, if not decades, and it's only now they are being noticed because of a variety of factors

By Rushdi Siddiqui

The New York Stock Exchange. Muslims working in non-Muslim countries do understand work is for work, even in Islamic finance, and informed non-Muslim colleagues understand basic tenets of Islam.

The New York Times recently interviewed several American Muslims, including me, working in the financial arena for an article Muslims on Wall Street, Bridging Two Traditions. It explored two ‘conflicts': Muslims working in conventional finance may encounter ‘interest' against their faith, and challenges of abiding by Islamic ‘traditions' in a secular workplace.

Today, it seems to an outsider, the burning issues for Muslims on Wall Street include prayer breaks, fasting and productivity, bonding after-office drinks, shaking a woman's hand wearing a hijab, and structuring instruments dealing with (the prohibited) interest.

This cannot be what Muslims are about. Also, more credit must be given to working non-Muslim colleagues on understanding Muslim sensitivities.

Muslims, like other people with strong beliefs, do not see themselves exclusively focused on or defined by such issues. Islam has spread throughout the world because of its dynamic nature, where it influences local customs and is ‘influenced' by the older local culture.

Religion is a private matter and it's looked upon as foundation for building inner discipline and external strength to address challenging situations. People of faith, like their secular colleagues, want to climb the corporate ladder and break the glass ceiling to get to the executive floor, if not the corner office. Muslims have been on Wall Street and High Street for many years, if not decades, and it's only now they are being noticed. The difference between then and now is there are more Muslims in the financial sector and non-Muslim colleagues know more about Islam because of a combination of internet, 24-7 news, 9/11, documentaries, Dubai's accomplishments, Islamic finance and personalities like His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

It should be noted that many Muslims were involved in the Occupy Wall Street movement because of common shared values. In the New York Times article there are two quotes that best summarise how Muslims, residing in a non-Muslim country such as the US, should think about and approach a place of work and perception of fellow workers. "I think Muslim professionals are too sensitive and underestimate our co-workers," comments a consultant in the article.

"Seek the opportunities and firms that speak to their set of values, expertise and passion," said Mohammad Al Arian, CEO of Pimco.

Just as an employer interviews a potential employee, the latter also needs to interview the former.

I have worked at two multinational companies in the US, heading their Islamic finance business, in New York. First at Dow Jones Indexes for 10 years and now at Thomson Reuters.
A common denominator for international companies is their diverse employee base due to extensive international presence, including many Muslim countries. The corporate culture in these companies reflects common shared values formalised in codes of ethics. Thus, these companies understand ‘sensitivities', and have high expectations of all employees.

As Muslims working in the West we do have a tendency to initially "underestimate our co-workers" in understanding our rituals (prayers, fasting, etc.), and our prohibitions (alcohol). While it could be attributed to many things, such as prejudices, with time there is a mutual understanding and respect.

The New York Times article used examples of Muslims finding places for praying during working hours or Friday prayers, and fasting during Ramadan. The article should have taken this one step further, and asked the Muslim worker about non-Muslim colleagues fasting or visiting a mosque.

Most, if not all, of us have non-Muslim colleagues who have fasted, some partially (till lunch time) and others until sunset. One of the great attributes of Americans is they like challenges, and will push the envelope of endurance. Others have visited mosques, and made observations such as "nothing fancy inside", "where are the stained glass windows, pews, gold crescent and star?"

Maybe the article should have interviewed non-Muslims working in senior positions in Islamic finance in Saudi Arabia, the UAE or Malaysia on drinking alcohol, shaking hands with conservative women, breaking meetings for prayer time and so on. As senior executives, they are deemed ambassadors of the Islamic financial institution, and it does imply abiding by a certain level of Islamic code of conduct in public places.


The bottomline is that there is understanding and respect for rituals as long as teamwork, quality and deliverables are not compromised.

Muslims working in non-Muslim countries do understand work is for work, even in Islamic finance, and informed non-Muslim colleagues understand basic tenets of Islam. Muslims need to continue taking a pragmatic, over dogmatic, approach to finding the balance between faith and finance.

[The writer is Global Head, Islamic Finance and OIC Countries, Thomson Reuters.]

(Courtesy: Gulf News)

SPECIAL REPORT: In Election year, law to stop cow slaughter in Gujarat likely to be implemented

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | 26 April 2012 | Posted in , , , ,

By Abdul Hafiz Lakhani
Ahmedabad: This is a eclection year in Gujarat and Chief Minister Narendra Modi wants to register a thumping and record break victory by securing more than 140 seats out of 182 seats of the state assembly. For this purpose, it is well on cards that the sale of beef in the state will be very serious crime and the state government is trying to implement some laws to stop  cow slaughter.

Currently,  there are six major cities in Gujarat  whose municipal corporations are under the BJP  rule. They are likely to bring a  resoultion to ban beef in their respective city -- Ahmedabad, |Surat, Bhavnagar, Rajkot and Vadodara.

Palitana Municipal Committee is buckling under the pressure of the Jain religious leadership and passed a resolution in its general body to ban the sale of meat and other non-vegetarian food, including eggs, within the municipal limits. The decision would be implemented after inviting objections from the residents of the town with a population of over one lakh, with 25 per cent of it being Muslims.

According to the local government officials, about 40 percent of the population of the town is non-vegetarian. A municipal official told this reporter that apart from Muslims, many Hindu communities like Kolis are also non-veg and opposing the decision. Out of two non-veg hotels in the town, one is run by a Sindhi Hindu and another by a Muslim.

BJP is in majority in the municipality, occupying 30 seats in a house of 36. Six Congress members led by Hidabhai Baloch, a Muslim, boycotted the resolution. However, Baloch refused to make any comment when contacted.

Municipality's chief executive officer J L Dave said: ``We will invite objections from the people as it is a policy matter. We can't take a decision on our own. Depending on the response of the people, we will write to the state government.'' He said that everything would depend on the reactions of the people to the municipality.

Another official told that this decision was taken by the municipality under political pressure as Jains were politically veryinfluential in the state and contributed a lot to the BJP election coffers. However, the official said that the decision for a ban was not as per constitutional provisions.
Muslim residents of the town fear that if the ban is implemented, they would also not be allowed slaughter animals during Baqrid which is their religious duty. They say that the decision is in favour of one community, overlooking the religious responsibilities of the other.

They have requested the administration not to buckle under the pressure of Jains who do not account for even five percent of the town's population. Palitana is a well-known Jain pilgrim town, with thousands of Jain visiting the temple every year. Palitana is about 70 kms from Bhavnagar about 400 kms from Ahmedabad.

Well-known social activist Dr. J.S. Bandukwala from Vadodara, said  "It is ironic that Jains are so paranoid about the sale of even eggs, considering it as killing life. Yet the Jains were the leaders of the 2002 Gujarat pogrom . The rapes, killings and loot were organised by Jain leaders, among them Amit Shah, the Modi confidante, now barred by the Supreme Court from entering Gujarat. To the best of my knowledge, no Jain Acharya has denounced these killings of Muslims."

[Abdul Hafiz Lakhani is a senior Journalist based at Ahmedabad, Gujarat. He is associated with IndianMuslimObserver.com as Bureau Chief (Gujarat). He can be reached at lakhani63@yahoo.com or on his cell 09228746770]

AIMPLB Convention: Muslims take pledge to safeguard Shariah at all cost

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | | Posted in , , , ,

AIMPLB convention concludes with resolve to intensify ‘Save Constitutional Rights Campaign’

By Pervez Bari

Mumbai: A historic public meeting of the All India Muslim Personal Law Board, (AIMPLB), which was held at the Azad Maidan here on Sunday night, wherein Muslim clerics from different schools of thought in Islam exhorted Muslims to unite and exert pressure on the governments of the day not to tamper with Shariah (Islamic) laws.

A  sea of humanity was witnessed as nearly a lakh Muslims converged from all over Maharashtra to hear the Muslim clerics who are spearheading a campaign to safeguard their constitutional and religious rights. They heard the clerics with rapt attention as how the governments of the day at the Centre and the states have been conniving to deprive them their religious rights as guaranteed in the Indian Constitution.

The Azad Maidan echoed with “Nara-e-Takbeer Allah-o-Akbar” at regular intervals as the air became thick with religious fervour and emotions all over. All Muslims at the venue took the pledge by raising their hands to safeguard the Muslim personal laws.

Maulana Syed Mohammad Rabey Hasani Nadvi, President of AIMPLB, addressing the overflowing gathering declared Muslims can sacrifice their lives but can never tolerate interference in the Shariah laws. He emphatically said AIMPLB, which has always been vigilant in safeguarding the Shariah laws, will force the government to amend the Right to Education Act (RTE), scrap the Direct Taxes code Bill and bring changes in the Waqf Amendment Bill 2010.

The public meeting was organised at the end of the three-day 22nd convention of the AIMPLB here on Sunday.  The traffic police had a tough time to regulate traffic around Azad Maidan as many a times road jam occurred around the venue of the public meeting.

Earlier the convention of the AIMPLB concluded here at Hajj House on Sunday (April 22, 2012) with a resolve to intensify its “Aaeenee Huqooq Bachao Muhim” (Save Constitutional Rights Campaign) started in November 2010.

An 11-point resolutions were adopted by voice vote at the end of the convention which laid emphasis on amendments to rectify lacunae in different Acts like RTE, Direct Tax Code Bill, Waqf Amendment Act 2010. The convention directed the “Aaeenee Huqooq Bachao Muhim” to strengthen it further and organise it in a consolidated manner while developing rapport with different secular parties of the country.  Further in states where it is hoped that the state governments hold helping attitude towards the demands there efforts be made to get the RTE and Waqf Acts amended in the state assemblies as per the wishes of AIMPLB.

The AIMPLB has been the running the Save Constitutional Rights Campaign and has held meetings in all the major towns and cities in the country to create awareness about the negative effects of the RTE Act on the educational fabric of the country.

At the fag end of the 22nd convention of AIMPLB a document “Mumbai Aa’laamiya” (Mumbai Declaration) was released which exhorted the Muslims to adopt Shariah (Islamic ) laws in their day to day life and not ape Western civilization to mar their “Akhirat” (life Hereafter). If they do not practice Islamic laws practically then why would the governments of the day safeguard it. The document urged the Muslims to get their family problems adjudicated by “Dar-ul-Qaza” (Islamic courts) and accept the judgement passed by Qazi in the light of the commandments of the holy Quran and Sunnah whole-heartedly without any incrimination whatsoever.

The AIMPLB convention appreciated the written assurance of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav to amend the inheritance rule in UP Agriculture Land and the right to Inheritance of women in the state to grant married `Muslim women’s share in it. The AIMPLB hoped that the chief minister would carry out his assurance within three months time.

Earlier, Maulana Rabey Nadvi in his concluding remarks at the end of the convention expressed his happiness that a joint platform has been working successfully for the lat 40 years since its inception here in Mumbai in 1972 to safeguard the religious and constitutional rights of Muslims. This has been possible because the Muslim Ummah in the country, despite professing various school of thoughts in Islam, have maintained unity by sacrificing their egos. The Indian Constitution has given right to challenge the violation of their rights as guaranteed by it.

The AIMPLB has urged the Union Government to concede the demand to amend the Right to Education (RTE) Act and get it passed by the Parliament at the earliest as the HRD Minister Mr. Kapil Sibal has assured many a times to do so. Despite the recent Supreme Court judgement the Madarsas and Muslim religious institutions do not get the exemption from the RTE Act as rights given to minority institutions under  Articles 29 and 30 are violated, the resolution said.

Maulana Syed Wali Rahmani, Secretary of AIMPLB, who is the national convenor of the Board’s action Committee to save constitutional rights, addressing the convention on the third day said there are many sections in the RTE Act 2009 which if not amended, would collapse our entire education system and would ultimately push India into chaos. The  sections 17 (5) and 18 (1) of the RTE Act bar setting up of schools without prior permission and set guidelines about the school curriculum.

“These sections are in direct conflict of the rights given to the religious and linguistic minorities under Articles 29 and  30 of the Indian Constitution”, Maulana Rahmani pointed out. Not only the AIMPLB but other Muslim scholars have opposed the Act on various grounds, he added.
He said that the recent decision of Apex court was an incomplete judgement. It has said that only the unaided minority institutions have been exempted from the purview of the Act but the aided minority institutions have not been exempted although the status of a minority institution is not affected if it receives government grant. The religious institutions come under Article 26 and have the right to run without government education.

He said, “The definition of elementary education is the syllabus formed by  the state government boards or CBSE and  other government boards are called elementary education. But Madarsas or minority institutions have their own syllabus. In this sense, they do not provide elementary education. Therefore, they commit a punishable offence of not providing elementary education to children between 6 to 14 years of age. And the parents  who admit their children in these Madarsas commit a punishable act. That’s why the AIMPLB has demanded that both aided and unaided minority institutions should be exempted from the RTE Act.”  

The convention appealed to the government to amend the Waqf Amendment Act 2010 as per the proposal of the Board as there are still lacuna in it despite Select Committee Report. Similarly, the Direct Tax Code Bill should be amended in a such way that religious places and charitable institutions are exempted from Income Tax and Wealth Tax in an explicit manner.

The convention called that those Nikah which have not been registered should not be considered illegal. The marriage registration should be simplified and the registration must be linked with those persons who solemnise marriages like “Nikah Khwan” or Imams. From them the government agencies can take details of Nikah and computerise it for records as the record of births of children are taken from hospitals and maternity homes.

The resolution demanded to allow Muslims to offer prayers in such Masjids which have been banned by the Archaeological Survey of India as it is their religious right which cannot be curbed. The management of such Masjids be handed over to respective Waqf Boards for maintenance.

The AIMPLB has urged the Union Government to exempt Muslims from the proposed legislation to mention the name of mother as the first guardian in the name of birth certificates of children. This is against from the Islamic point of view as the right of guardianship of children is father and as such he is responsible.

[Pervez Bari is a senior Journalist based at Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh. He is associated with IndianMuslimObserver.com as Bureau Chief (Madhya Pradesh). He can be contacted at pervezbari@eth.net]

Muslim Spelling Bee hosts regional competitions in Houston, Dallas and Ilinois

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | | Posted in , , , ,

Students from Islamic, Public, Private and Home School participate from adjoining states and Canada

IMO News Service

The nationwide World’s first Muslim Spelling Bee competition held the regional competitions in Houston (Al Hadi School of Accelerative Learning), Dallas (Islamic School of Irving) and Illinois (MCC Fulltime School). A large number of students participated from adjoining states from Islamic, public, private and home schools.

All the events started at 8.30 AM with registration and followed by recitation of the Holy Quran. The participants were divided according to their ages into 3 groups A, B & C and they were guided by the volunteers to their respective sitting arrangements.The Board, Principal of the host schools and Founders of Muslim Spelling Bee welcomed and thanked everyone present at the event. This was followed by the competition of Group A which consisted of students up to 8 years old and which had the highest numbers of participants. After Group A, Group B was called on stage for the competition and followed by Group C. Group B and Group C finalists regaled the audience with their tough competition.

The winners of Regional Competition – Houston

Group A – First Position: Zehra Mirza; Second Position: Baqir Salim
Group B – First Position: Syeda Maryam Beyabani; Second Position: Hassan Ali
Group C– First Position: Sara Ali Kazmi; Second Position: Mohammad Sajjad Syed Jafri

The winners of Regional Competition – Dallas

Group A – First Position: Reza Oufi; Second Position: Affan Ahmed Haq
Group B – First Position; Ayesha Shahla; Second Position: Aleema Hafsa Haq
Group C– First Position Abdullah Muhammad Akbar; Second Position: Naureen Wajahat

The winners of Regional Competition – Illinois

Group A – First Position: Asiyah Mardiyyah Arastu (Charles Lindberg Elementary); Second Position: Fatma Ala (Crescent International Academy)
Group B – First Position: Aaisha N Hafeez; Second Position: Aisha Suhail Hameed
Group C– First Position Isra M Hasnain; Second Position: Talhah Sabir Junagadhwala

The events concluded with award ceremony and awards were presented to the winners by Principals and teachers of various Schools presesent at the event.

Principal Lisa Al Saedi, Al Hadi School of Accerlative Learning, Houston, said, “We like competitions and believe education and competitions are important aspects of growth for our students. Our country is know for comeptitive excellence and this is a small part of our role of achieving competitive execellence amongst our students and community.”

School Adminstrator Rehana Ahmed of Islamic School of Irving, Dallas, said that this is great opportunity for the student community as this will help them learn in a competitive learning environment and we feel this will help the society at large due to education .

Principal Habib Qadri, MCC Fulltime School, Morton Grove, said, “We welcome all for this regional competition and wish the students to do well in this competition and also in other academic spheres.”

According to Muslim Spelling Bee founders all the participants are winners as they worked hard and learned value of education and competition and hence they were awarded with participation certificates.

Riyaz Babbar Khan of TV ONE Global, which is the official television and radio partner of Muslim Spelling Bee competition, said that the competition is being recorded and will be broadcasted shortly.

Sara Taher Khan, Director of TV ONE Global and Interflow Group, said, “TV ONE is one of the earlier supporter of the Muslim Spelling Bee and we believed that this would be an ideal opportunity to create education awareness through competitions.We would be shortly announcing the programming details and we are available on major cable and satellite networks, please visit our website www.tv1online.tv for updates.”

Dr. Asma Rizvi, co-founder of Muslim Spelling Bee, thanked everyone and informed about the forthcoming regional competition to be held in New York and the Finals at the historic DesPlaines Theatre, DesPlaines, Illinois.

Tausif Malik, co-founder of Muslim Spelling Bee, announced that the Canadian Edition of Muslim Spelling Bee will be held in September-October 2012, and UK Edition of Muslim Spelling Bee will be held May-June 2012.

If you are interested in getting involved in the Muslim Spelling Bee, please visit www.muslimspellingbee.com.

For more information, please call:

Tausif Malik
Cell: 773.536.9786
Email: media@muslimspellingbee.com

Amnesty International encourages Europe to fight anti-Muslim prejudice

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | | Posted in , , ,

Paris:  European laws on what girls and women wear on their heads are encouraging discrimination against Muslims and against a religion that has been part of Europe's fabric for centuries, Amnesty International says in a new report.

Extremist political movements targeting Muslim practices for criticism have enjoyed a rise in several European countries -- as witnessed by French far right leader Marine Le Pen's surprisingly strong showing in presidential elections this week.

In that climate, the Amnesty report released Tuesday lists a raft of examples of discrimination against Muslims from Spain to the Netherlands and Turkey, spurred on by laws viewed as anti-Islam.

The report, titled "Choice and Prejudice," pays special attention to national laws or local rules against wearing headscarves or face-covering Islamic veils. France and Belgium ban them outright, as do some towns in Spain and elsewhere.

"Amnesty International is concerned that states have focused so much in recent years on the wearing of full-face veils, as if this practice were the most widespread and compelling form of inequality women in Europe have to face," the report says.

Proponents, such as French President Nicolas Sarkozy, say face-covering veils imprison women and violate France's values of equality. France also bans headscarves in schools.
The niqab, a veil with just a slit for the eyes, and the burqa, with a mesh covering for the eyes, are worn only by a very small minority of European Muslims. But banning them creates an atmosphere of suspicion of anyone with visibly Islamic dress, the Amnesty report says.

It cites French Muslim women who wear headscarves, which cover the hair but leave the face exposed, as saying they have experienced epithets and public pressure since Sarkozy started calling for a face-veil ban.

The human rights group spoke to Muslims who have had trouble getting jobs or had to change schools because of discrimination over their head coverings.

The report says Spain and Switzerland, in particular, don't have strong enough laws against discrimination. Switzerland has banned the construction of new minarets.

In Spain, Amnesty highlighted cases in the northeastern region of Catalonia where Muslims are sometimes obliged to pray in the street because their congregations have grown too big for existing mosques, yet permission to build new ones is denied because local residents have objected. It said at least 40 disputes over new mosques had arisen in Catalonia between 1990 and 2008.

Belgium has seen several legal disputes in recent years involving Muslims who say they lost work because of their headscarves, and Muslim communities barred from building a minaret for their mosques because "this doesn't fit the landscape," said Mehmet Saygin of moderate group Muslim Vigilance.

Amnesty urges European authorities to allow mosque-building regardless of whether non-Muslim residents disagree.

"If a proposed Muslim place of worship meets all requirements, public authorities should not deny authorization solely on the grounds that some people living locally may not want a mosque in their neighborhood," it says.

Many Europeans wrongly assume all Muslims are immigrants, even though Islam has been a leading religion in Europe for centuries, the report notes. That makes the discrimination especially painful for the millions of Muslims born in Europe who are told to "go home" -- when they have no other "home" to flee to.

In France, candidate Le Pen and her anti-immigrant National Front party have singled out Muslim practices such as ritual slaughter of animals for criticism.

Conservative Sarkozy has borrowed from Le Pen's rhetoric as he heads into a runoff vote May 6 with Socialist Francois Hollande. Le Pen scored a strong third place in Sunday's first-round election, handing her party new political influence ahead of parliamentary elections in June.
European Union officials warned this week against flirting too much with the extreme right and sacrificing European unity, built on the ashes of World War II.

One of the most vivid signs that European authorities have failed to root out a growing Islamophobia was the massacre in Norway last year by a man who fears Muslims are taking over Europe. Images of him defending his rampage in court have been televised across the continent over the past week.

(Courtesy: FoxNews.com)

Languages and Cultures: From Khuda Hafiz to Allah Hafiz

Posted by Indian Muslim Observer | | Posted in , , , ,

By Aamir Latif

Pakistan is a multi-lingual and multi-cultural country, where, according to a famous local saying: the pronunciation of even one language changes after every 40 kilometers. The state-run radio Pakistan airs programs in 18 languages, which have been recognized as national and regional languages.

Apart from these 18 languages, over 100 different languages are spoken across this South Asian nuclear Muslim nation. Many of these languages have deeper commonalities, but many have to strive for something common between them, though the influence of Arabic, Persian, Hindi, and Turkish on all major languages spoken in Pakistan is evident.

With these commonalities and differences, all the major languages spoken here have developed one thing common during last two decades. Till early 1990s, the term Khuda was used in almost all major and minor languages for God, which has been replaced by word “Allah” during last twenty years.

Khuda hafiz (may God protect you) had been the most popular phrase in all over Pakistan till early 1990s, which has gradually been replaced by Allah hafiz. Khuda is a Persian word borrowed by Urdu, Pakistan’s national language. Urdu is not a very old language. Its history cannot be traced beyond 16th century.

Urdu is a Turkish word, which means the language of army, and it is conglomerate of Arabic, Persian, Turkish, and Hindi.

The Roots

Outside Pakistan, "Khuda hafiz" is also known to be used in Iran, Afghanistan, and Tajikistan and among Muslims in India.

When King Babar, the founder of Moghal Empire, who originally hailed from Turkey, but later conquered Afghanistan, and settled in Kabul, invaded United India in 1526, his army comprised soldiers from different origins – from Turkey to Afghanistan, and from Iran to India. Therefore, he required a common language that could unite his army.

Many believe that Khuda can refer to any God, whereas Allah is specific name for God in noble Qur’an.

Maulana Wali Razi, a former minister for religious affairs, and a renowned religious scholar observes that the term Allah instead of Khuda is used just for the sake of carefulness. Otherwise, he believes, there is nothing wrong in using the term Khuda for God.

In ancient Iran, word Khuda and Khudawund had also been used for emperors. Similarly, word “Nakhuda” is also used for captain of the ship in Persian and Urdu. Another term “Majazi Khuda” is used for husband in Urdu.

Therefore, it is considered better to use the term Allah instead of Khuda just to avoid ambiguity.
“This is a misconception that the word hafiz is a Persian word. It is an Arabic word borrowed by Persian and later by Urdu. Therefore, if we use the term Khuda hafiz, that means, we are using one word from Persian and one from Arabic. Whereas if we use the term Allah hafiz, that means, we are using both words from one language (Arabic), which is much better  in terms of linguistic rules as well”, Razi, an author of several books on religion and social issues told OnIslam.net.

Razi recalled that many religious scholars in their Tafaseer (explanation of noble Qur’an) have used the term Khuda, which means replacement of the term Khuda with Allah is not at all a religious issue as depicted by some critics.

“This is purely a linguistic development. If someone is comfortable with the term Khuda, that’s very much okay. What we (religious scholar) have little emphasis on the term Allah, is just to avoid ambiguity”, he maintained.

Khuda Hafiz (may God protect you) had been the most popular phrase in all over Pakistan till early 1990s, which has gradually been replaced by Allah Hafiz.

Not Only in Urdu

Not only in Urdu, but in five other major languages- Sindhi, Balochi, Pashtu, Siraiki, and Punjabi-, the term Khuda has been replaced by Allah during this period. For instance, in Pashtu, which is spoken in northwest of Pakistan, and in neighboring Afghanistan, the phrase Khuday-e-- Paiyman” (be God with you) was used to say goodbye till early 1990s, but now the phrase has been replaced b y “Allah Paiyman” for the same.

In Balochi language, which is spoken in southwestern Balochistan province, and southern Punjab province, the phrase “Allah tara madadbath” (may God protect you) has replaced the phrase “Khuda tara madadbath” that was used predominantly till early 1990s.
Similarly, in Punjabi, Sindhi, and Siraiki languages the phrases “Allah beli”, and “Allah wahi”, are used to say goodbye.

Many believe that the promotion of “Allah hafiz” first began during the era of former military dictator, General Zia-ul-Haq, who was the blue-eyed boy of United States and Saudi Arabia due to Pakistan’s involvement in Afghan Jihad against defunct USSR forces. They see the replacement of term Khuda by Allah as a result of Saudi influence in Pakistan.

However, a section of analysts point out that the trend of “ Allah hafiz” was actually promoted by the country’s first elected Prime Minister, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto in mid 1970s despite the fact that Mr Bhutto’s wife Nusrat Bhutto herself was an Iranian.

Razi dispels the impression regarding Saudi influence behind promotion of the term Allah.
“If you want to involve politics in pure linguistic and literary issues, I cannot stop you from thinking like that”, Razi said.

“ Persian and Arabic both are our languages. We prefer Arabic just because it is the language of Qur’an. And that is it”.

Despite an overwhelming promotion of term Allah hafiz to say goodbye, some continue to use “Khuda hafiz".

“I don’t see any difference between Khuda and Allah. The ambiguity shows by your intentions, and our intention is that we are using the term Khuda for Allah Subhan wa ta’Allah”, zamir Shaikh, a school teacher told OnIslam.net.

Outside Pakistan, "Khuda hafiz" is also known to be used in Iran, Afghanistan, and Tajikistan and among Muslims in India.

As mentioned in The Guardian's article, interestingly, while Allah is an Arabic word, the Arabs themselves don't use "Allah hafiz" – which is a purely Pakistani-manufactured invention. Rather the Arabs use "ma salama" or "Allah ysalmak" when parting company. For any who feels there is no need to mention God in a greeting in any language, remember even the English word "goodbye"  derives from “ God be with you”  which was the standard greeting at one time.

(Courtesy: OnIslam.net)

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