AYODHYA: Tablighi Jamaat chief Maulana Muhammad Saad Kandhlawi reportedly didn’t listen to advice and requests from several senior clerics, Muslim intellectuals and his own aides to cancel the March 2020 Nizamuddin meet soon after the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic.
His stubborn attitude has not only jeopardised lives of hundreds of his own followers, who were taught to repose blind faith in him, but also tarnished the images of Muslims, say many community members. Many of those who attended the markaz have tested positive for the virus and have been quarantined, while Saad remains in hiding with a handful of his musheers (advisors).
While 30% of all corona cases in the country are linked to the Jamaat, in UP this count goes up to almost 50%.
While the other other faction of Tablighi Jamaat — Shura-e-Jamaat — which has its headquarters at Turkman Gate, Delhi, cancelled all it events immediately after the coronavirus outbreak, an unfazed Maulana Saad insisted on continuing with his scheduled programme and preached about the “best death in mosque” as heard in one of his viral audio tapes.
A Tablighi Jamaat veteran Mohammad Aalam, said, “Saad was aware of everything, but his stubborn attitude pushed innocent Tablighis into the jaws of a pandemic.” “How can the man, who claims to be the Ameer of Muslims of the world and terms the Tablighi Markaz as the most sacred place after Mecca and Madina, be so ignorant about the coronavirus pandemic,” he asked.
Another old Tablighi member, Liyaqat Ali Khan of Mau, said, “Why did Maulana Saad junk advice of responsible Muslims intellectuals? And why is he hiding and not getting himself checked for the virus.”
A close confidant of Maulana Saad told TOI on condition of anonymity that repeated requests to cancel the event fell on deaf ears. “Now, he has pushed his own followers to the brink,” he said.
Congress leader Meem Afzal and another Muslim leader Zafar Sareshwala have revealed to the media about several advices sent to Maulana Saad to cancel the meet, but he remained intransigent.
However, Maulana Haaris, another aide of Saad, defended his leader by saying that “when our jamaats came from foreign countries, the Indian government allowed them to enter. How is it our fault?”
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