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Ulema convention opposes ‘Sharia by force’

April 18, 2007

PESHAWAR, April 17: A convention of some 2,000 scholars, teachers and administrators representing over 1000 madressas across the country on Tuesday declared suicide attacks un-Islamic and opposed enforcement of Sharia by force.

Organized by JUI-F, the convention also declared illegal and un-Islamic threats to hairdressers against shaving off beards and attacks on video shops in the name of Islam and curbing obscenity.

The meeting of scholars adopted a joint declaration containing six resolutions. In one of the resolutions, the scholars and ulema disapproved acts of subversion carried out recently in many parts of the country by some extremists.

They also opposed issuing letters containing threats to video shops, barbers and administrations of schools for girls.

The declaration said that some invisible forces had committed suicide attacks against administration of an Islamic country causing harm to innocent Muslims.

“Such violent acts are not only against the law of the land, these acts of subversion are also against Shariat. This cannot be supported,” the declaration said.

NWFP Chief Minister Akram Khan Durrani, provincial ministers and heads of seminaries from the NWFP, Fata, Karachi, Islamabad, Lahore and other parts of the country attended the convention.

The declaration said: “JUI-F believes in political, constitutional and democratic struggle to implement Shariat across the country. But the party workers and students of seminaries should stay away from all the conspiracies being hatched in the name of Islam.

“Heads of all seminaries are requested not to indulge themselves in such conspiracies and focus only on learning activities. Religious institutions should only be used for educational activities.”

One of the resolutions said that the country had been built in the name of Islam and it was the government’s responsibility to take action to eliminate indecency and immorality in order not to provide opportunity to non-state elements to take law into their hands.

The declaration, signed by prominent clerics, including Mualana Fazlur Rehman, said that people were being instigated to rush to Islamabad and participate in Jihad. “Masses are being instigated through provocative statements, pamphlets, telephonic address and slogans to provoke them.