Javed Akhtar gets death threat for criticising Deoband fatwa

via PTI published on May 15, 2010

Lyricist and Rajya Sabha member Javed Akhtar on Saturday lodged a case with the Mumbai  police after he received an e-mail threat for criticising a fatwa banning women working with men.

In the complaint, Akhtar said that he received an email in which it was stated that the countdown to his end has begun. The email also dared Akhtar to try to save himself if he could.

On Tuesday, the Darul Uloom Deoband, in a Talibanesque fatwa, decreed that it is ‘haram’ and illegal according to the Sharia for a family to accept a woman’s earnings.

Clerics at the world’s second largest Sunni Muslim seminary said the decree flowed from the fact that the Sharia prohibited the proximity of men and women at the workplace.

The e-mail taunted Akhtar, claiming he is a Muslim only in name and is actually a Jewish agent.  Reportedly, the e-mail signed by one Aneesul Islam accuses Akhtar of hurting Muslim sentiments with his comments.

The email said Akhtar could ignore the Ulema’s orders if he wished, but he should not have said the fatwa was irrelevant.

The threat to Akhtar comes on the heels of a group of clerics criticising his anti-fatwa comments.

The clerics said that since Akhtar was not an authority on Islam, he should not comment on Islamic affairs.

Akhtar had opposed the Darul Uloom Deoband’s fatwa and apparently described muftis as insane.

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