ISLAMOPHOBIA is one of the biggest challenges the Muslims have been facing in recent times. Blasphemous remarks by Indian politicians recently sparked an outrage across the world and led to faith-related violence. From hateful speeches to brutal murders, Muslims across the world face political, social, religious and cultural discrimination at different levels on the basis of their faith.

The discriminatory law and policies in certain countries have led to a ban on hijab and on the construction of minarets for being ‘religious symbols’. Europe for sure is taken as a bastion of Islamophobia.

One cannot deny that bigotry among Muslims themselves and certain racist policies pedalled by governments in Islamic countries are equally to be blamed for the increase in anti-Muslim hysteria in the world.

According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the number of anti-Muslim incidents in the United States has increased to 257 per year in recent times. A report of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has revealed that more than 10 European states have restricted women from wearing burqa and/or hijab in public places.

Although the United Nations has adopted a resolution and declared March 15 as the International Day to Combat Islamophobia, the animosity against Muslims thus far has remained unaffected.

Being the representative body of the Islamic world, the OIC needs to play its role efficiently in safeguarding the rights of Muslims. It should develop an international Islamic huddle where all countries should collaborate with each other to stand firm against Islamophobia.

Muhammad Muneeb Elahi
Kasur

Published in Dawn, August 5th, 2022

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