By Latheef Farook –
Muslims of all walks of life now begin to realize that they should stop voting for parties like the Muslim Congress while calling for overhauling the All Ceylon Jamiathul Ulema, ACJU, to guide the community without compromising Islam.
They emphasize the need to join hands with Rev Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith to ensure the Easter Sunday massacre masterminds are brought to justice so that Muslim community’s innocence too could be proved.
Many believe that the masterminds behind the Easter Sunday carnage also aimed at pitting Muslims against Christians and get them to kill each other. Such a disaster was averted due to the timely interference of Cardinal Malcom Ranjith who said this was the work of handful of Muslim individuals and nothing to do with the Muslim community.
Sri Lanka, a shining example during the country’s independence in 1948 for the entire Third World for political and economic stability and communal harmony, is today one of the most mismanaged and corrupted countries on the verge of political collapse and economic bankruptcy. Racist politics since independence in 1948 was fully responsible for the current tragic plight.
In the aftermath of the ethnic war, Muslims were fully behind the government. They also expected the government to learn lesson from the war, bring communities together and march forward for the common good of all. However learning no lesson, racist politics turned against minority Muslims while opening the country to forces such as India’s BJP and Israel -sworn enemies of Islam and Muslims.
These forces care a damn for Sri Lanka in implementing their evil agendas.
Persecution of Muslims culminated in the violent attacks on Aluthgama, Dharga Town and Beruwala where Muslim properties and even mosques were burnt. In one of the most despicable acts they burnt copies of Holy Quran and even urinated on them. None was brought to justice so far.
Persecution of Muslims continued under Maithri-Ranil government too with greater intensity and climaxed in the Easter Sunday massacre. Muslim community had nothing to do with it though demonized and subjected to violent attacks as planned.
Demonization of Islam and Muslims and violence against them continued.
This campaign brought to power Sinhala Buddhist government of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa by 6.9 million votes in August 2019.Since then the new government had introduced numerous measures detrimental to Muslims.
In the midst the government appointed a Muslim lawyer Ali Sabry, as minister of justice who introduced the 20 Amendment to the constitution dismantling democracy and paving the way for Sinhala Buddhist dictatorship. The amendment was passed with the support of several Muslim parliamentarians. The common view among the public was that they had betrayed the voters who had elected them by voting for the 20 Amendment.
The government used Justice Minister Ali Sabry to present the 20th Amendment and help create a Sinhala Buddhist dictatorship.
In the midst comes reports of a special function inside the Dehiwela Mosque to commemorate Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa’s birth anniversary which was addressed by Justice Minister Ali Sabry.
Many Muslims were shocked, as mosques were not meant for political purposes. They pointed out that one has the right to support any politician they like. However using Mosques, Allah’s House, for political purpose with banners triggered heated discussion in the electronic media with many condemning the All Ceylon Jamithul Ulema and its controversial leadership for allowing this.
In a special video message Moulavi As Shaikh Imthiaz Yoosuf explained that Mosques should not be used for political activities associated with corruption, crime and injustice.
It was a political gathering with banners inside the mosque. If Minister Ali Sabry who addressed the gathering lived in the same planet where we live he should have known what happened to Muslims in the country since the end of the ethnic war in May 2009.
This was not the first time as controversial Muslim businessmen and equally controversial ACJU chief organized a function marking Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s first anniversary of presidency at Colpetty Mosque.
Recently many Sinhalese pointed out in video interviews that they do not know anything about Islam. A Buddhist monk who participated in what was described as flag hoisting ceremony at Daftar Jailani, Balangoda, stated what happens there is completely against Islamic teachings.
Isn’t this the work of ACJU which remains a oneman show for more than 22 years, committed blunder after blunder and failed to reach out to Sinhalese with the message of Islam.
Such changes are essentials as powerful global Islamphobic forces which invade and destroy Muslim countries and slaughter millions of innocent Muslim while driving millions into refugee camps are here with their own evil agendas. It appears they have already done the damage to pit Sinhalese against Muslims using the racist media.
However every passing day increasing number of Sinhalese, including enlightened monks, begin to realize the damage done to Muslims and insist on the need to rectify this.
Under such circumstance Muslim community can’t afford the luxury of entrusting their destiny to corrupted politicians and so called religious leaders.
Muslim parliamentarians in the major parties such as Mujibur Rahman, Imthiaz Bakeer Markar, Kabir Hashim, S.M. Marikkar and Imran Mahroof are doing a better job as members of national parties. It is time for Muslims to join them and leave the half a dozen Muslim congresses where there is no Islam and lost the confidence of the community.
It is also time that the sleeping civil society wake up and play a significant role in putting the house in order while joining Sinhalese who consider this country belongs to Sinhalese, Tamils, Muslim and all others.
Muslims in the island were here more than 1200 years and made their significant contributions in many fields under Sinhalese kings who were not racists. They have their own history though racist politics which entered the island after independence for power try to deny their existence
In fact what racist elements failed to understand is that if not for the sufferings and sacrifices of the Muslim community Sri Lankan today would not have been one country.