Indian Muslims for Secular Democracy (IMSD) rejects the very idea of a theocratic state anywhere in the world. It therefore questions the legitimacy of the “Islamic Emirate” the Taliban seek to impose on the war-torn, war-weary people of Afghanistan who are yearning for peace.
We are deeply disturbed by the euphoria evident among a section of Indian Muslims, including religious leaders such as the office bearers of the All India Muslim Personal Law Board, Maulana Umrain Mahfuz Rahmani and Maulana Sajjad Nomani and the Jamaat-e-Islami-Hind, over the Taliban’s capture of power…….
It is nothing but sheer opportunism and hypocrisy to stand in support of a secular state in a country like India where Muslims are in a minority and applaud the imposition of Shariah rule wherever they are in a majority. Such rank double-standard gives legitimacy to the sangh parivar’s agenda for a Hindu Rashtra.
IMSD fully supports the view of the growing tribe of Islamic scholars, religious leaders and Muslim intellectuals across the globe who argue that the very notion of an “Islamic state” is antithetical to the core teachings of Islam. IMSD believes that the core values of Islam are not in conflict with the basic principles of a secular-democratic state and religious pluralism.
IMSD stands in solidarity with the beleaguered millions of Afghan women and men who for too long have been trapped between the corrupt-to-the-core puppet governments propped up by the occupying American forces and the regressive Taliban who during their earlier rule had trampled over the most basic rights and freedoms of the people of Afghanistan.
It is one thing to welcome the ouster of the occupiers and the overthrow of their puppets, quite another to celebrate the return to power of those who with their barbaric version of Islam have contributed in no small measure to the demonization of Muslims and their faith across the globe…..
Some leaders of the Taliban have been making appropriate noises about general amnesty, press freedom and women’s rights even as other leaders are making it plain that it will be “Sharia law and not democracy” in Afghanistan. However, heart-wrenching images of panic-stricken women, men and children being broadcast across the world, and news reports of house-to-house hunt for journalists and dissenters tells their own story.
We call on the global community to launch a ‘24/7 Afghanistan Watch’ to mount pressure on the Taliban to show to the world that in practice its Sharia law this time is different from its earlier brutal version where life for women in particular had been turned into a veritable hell on earth.
Meanwhile, IMSD calls upon the democratic world in general and the US in particular to open its borders to Afghan’s who are forced to flee from their country. It calls upon the BJP-led Indian government to immediately sign the 1951 United Nations Refugee Convention nor its 1967 Protocol and act in consonance to that convention.