Saturday, June 06, 2020
   
Text Size

Follow SLMuslims on


 

Latest News

  • හිජාස්ගේ පෙත්සමට විරෝධතා ගොනු කරන්න නියෝග
    පාස්කු ඉරුදින ප්‍රහාරය සම්බන්ධයෙන්  නීතීඥ හිජාස් හිස්බුල්ලා මහතා සැකපිට  අත්අඩංගුවට ගෙන රඳවා තබා ගැනීමෙන් ඔහුගේ මූලික අයිතිවාසිකම් කඩ වී ඇති බවත් , ඔහුව මුදා හරින නියෝගයක් නිකුත් කරන්නැයි ඉල්ලා ගොනු කළ මූලික අයිතිවාසිකම් පෙත්සම සම්බන්ධයෙන්  වන විරෝධතා සතියක් ඇතුළත ගොනු කරන්නැයි ශ්‍රේෂ්ඨාධිකරණය අද (01) වැඩබලන පොලිස්පතිට...
    Read More...
  • Hejaaz Hizbullah, The Shining Young Attorney Held Incommunicado By Mass L. Usuf
        The dreaded Prevention of Terrorism (Temporary Provisions) Act No. 48 of 1979 (PTA) has been in public discussion ever since it was enacted. It was initially introduced in Parliament as ‘Temporary Provisions’ vide Section 29 of the Act which read: “The provisions of this Act shall be in operation for a period of three years from the date of its commencement.” Thereafter, this Temporary Provision paradoxically found a permanent abode, approximating four decades, by virtue of an amendment; “Prevention of Terrorism (Temporary Provisions) Amendment Act, No. 10 of 1982. It now reads: “Section 29 of the principal enactment is hereby repealed.” Widely condemned as an equivalent of Draco’s law, this statute was passed under the watch of the JR Jayewardene Presidency. It was specifically designed to confer on the police...
    Read More...
  • ශ්‍රී ලංකාවේ කොරෝනා වසංගතය, 'මුස්ලිම් ප්‍රජාවට එරෙහි වෙනස්කම්', ත්‍රස්ත විරෝධී නීතිය සහ හිජාස් හිස්බුල්ලා
    Image copyrightTWITTER/ JUSTICE FOR HEJAAZ අදින් මාස කිහිපයකට පෙර ශ්‍රී ලංකාවේ ශ්‍රේෂ්ඨාධිකරණය ඉදිරියේ පැවති විභාගයකදී තරුණ නීතිඥවරයෙක් පෑ වාග් පෙළහර එහි සිටි බොහෝ දෙනාගේ සිත් ඇදගැනීමට සමත්විය. රට පුරා මහත් ආන්දෝලනයකට ලක් වූ ඒ නඩු විභාගයේදී ඔහු මතු කළ තර්ක කෙතරම් අවධානයට ලක් වූයේ ද යත් ඔහුගේ මිතුරන් මතු නොව, අධිකරණයේ දී ඔහුගේ ප්‍රතිවාදීන් වූ සගයින්...
    Read More...
  • NEC Chairman continuing as one-man commission: Hoole
    August, September dates  discussed for polls 
    Bills from 2019 presidential  election not paid
    My US citizenship oath nothing to  be ashamed of
    National Elections Commission (NEC) member Ratnajeevan H. Hoole has not been in good terms with NEC Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya in recent times and this has been evident in statements Hoole has made to the media. In an interview with Dailymirror, Hoole opens up on his issues with Deshapriya, concerns over the proposed dates for the parliamentary election and several other matters. Excerpts:

    Q  There was a lot of debate with regard to the postponed parliamentary poll and now the NEC has picked June 20 to hold the election. Why June 20?
    Many have asked why we chose the President’s birthday. I was not aware it is his birth date. Superstition is suggested because...
    Read More...
  • Sri Lanka’s Muslim Coronavirus Victims Deserve Honorable Religious Funeral
    While Sri Lankan government remains adamant on cremating bodies of Muslim coronavirus victims, despite an earlier decision to allow burials, doctors worldwide have come out with scientific facts to prove that   burials, now taking place in more than 180 countries worldwide, do not cause any harm to anyone.

    Burial for Muslim corona virus dead victims, according to World Health Organization guidelines and local funeral laws, was agreed all over the world  

    In a 16 minute video Dr Feroze M Mubarak, COVID-19 Practice Strategy Lead, Clinical Director, SAS North & Central London on scientific facts-Cremation of Covid 19 infected bodies, has explained clearly why in the case of Muslims, Christians and Jews burial should be permitted.

    https://youtu.be/NQQxvmgRp08   However here in Sri Lanka the government,...
    Read More...
  • Respect Burial Rights; Stop Hate Speech Against Muslims: UN Tells Gota
    The United Nations Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief has urged President Gotabaya Rajapaksa to follow WHO guidelines on the disposal of deceased persons.

    Writing to the President, the UN Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion said: We would like to encourage your Excellency’s Government to reconsider the provisions in the MoH Guideline by taking into account of the key considerations provided by WHO Guideline for the disposal of the bodies of human beings deceased from the COVID-19, and revise the circular accordingly. In view of the challenges posed by the pandemic it is important that the Government avoids any unnecessary measures that are likely to raise tension and are running contrary to the respect of the fundamental human rights of the persons belonging to different communities that exist in Sri Lanka....
    Read More...
  • Anguish as Sri Lanka forces Muslims to cremate COVID-19 victims
    Rights group and activists accuse gov't of forcing cremation of Muslim COVID-19 victims in disregard to WHO guidelines. The forced cremation of two COVID-19 infected Muslims in Sri Lanka has sent shock waves among the minority community, which accused the authorities of violating Islamic burial rites. Bishrul Hafi Mohammed Joonus, a 73-year- old  man from the capital Colombo who died of COVID-19, was the second Muslim to have been cremated in the Indian Ocean island nation, which has registered 151 cases so far. Bishrul's son Fayaz Joonus, 46, said his father who had a kidney...
    Read More...
  • ආදරණීය සිිංහල මිතුරන්ගෙන් කරන ‌ඉල්ලීම
      ඊයේ දින ‌කොරෝනා නිසා මරණයට පත් වූ මීගමුවේ පුද්ගලයාගේ මිනිය භූමිදානය කිරීමට කළ උත්සාහයන් අසාර්ථක වීම ගැනත් ඒ පිළිබඳව රවූෆ් හැකීම් වැනි ‌අය නිකුත් කළ මාධ්‍ය නිවේදනය ගැනත් විවිධ අදහස් සමාජ මාධ්‍යය ඔස්සේ ඉදිරිපත් ‌වෙමින් පවතී. ඒ අය නීතියට පටහැනිව කිසිවක් ඉල්ලුුුුවේ නැත. ‌‌‌‌ලෝක ‌‌‌සෙ‍ෳඛ්‍ය සංවිධානයේ මාර්ගෝපදේශය සහ ඒ අනුව...
    Read More...
  • Coronavirus toll in New York state passes 1,000: Live updates
      00:50 GMT - Death toll in New York state surpasses 1,000 More than 1,000 people have died from the coronavirus outbreak in New York state, according to a tally by The Associated Press  (AP) news agency. On Sunday evening, New York City said its toll had risen to 776. The total number of statewide deaths is not expected to be released until Monday, but with at least 250 additional deaths recorded outside the city as of Sunday morning, the state's total fatalities was at least 1,026, AP said. 00:30 GMT - China reports 31 new cases in mainland The number of COVID-19 infections in China continues to slow with health authorities in Beijing reporting 31 new cases at the end of Sunday. The figure includes one locally transmitted infection and marks a drop from the 45 cases reported a day earlier. There were no new cases for a sixth consecutive...
    Read More...
  • Iran urges US to free Iranian prisoners amid coronavirus pandemic
    Iran's government has urged the United States to release Iranians held in US jails on sanctions-related issues due to fears about the coronavirus outbreak. Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif accused Washington of holding a number of Iranians in its prisons and said under these circumstances they should be set free. Meanwhile, the death toll in Iran from the coronavirus rose to 2,378 on Friday, a jump of 144. Iran is one of the worst hit countries in the world. Zarif also referred to a report by The Guardian newspaper about Sirous Asgari, a science professor, who it said was still being...
    Read More...
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9

‘Radicalisation’ among Sri Lankan Muslims

Latest

User Rating: / 3
PoorBest 

‘Radicalisation’ among Sri Lankan Muslims

 

A number of recent opinion pieces penned by some well-known writers have drawn attention to the growing ‘radicalisation’ among the Muslims of Sri Lanka. Among the key concerns raised are that Sri Lankan Muslims are becoming ‘exclusivist’ and ‘self-alienating’ by following a strict interpretation of Islam, manifested in particular by the growing number of Muslim women who have adopted all-encompassing ‘alien, Arab attire’.


By conflating the veil with radical Islam, the writers, perhaps inadvertently, are feeding into Islamophobia, (an unfounded fear of Islam), and fanning the flames of social discord.


Most Muslim women choose to veil themselves because they view it as a religious obligation. It has no nexus whatsoever to the ‘radicalisation’ that is allegedly unfurling in the community. Veil-clad women do not represent nor do they promote a racist ideology. Furthermore, attacking or vilifying the veil will not make it go away; on the contrary a tolerant, plural and inclusive Sri Lanka has to accommodate all Muslims in whatever dress-code they choose to adopt.  The freedom to practice one’s faith is a basic human right that must be safeguarded. No one should attempt to interfere with someone else’s right to practice his or her professed religion in the manner he or she sees fit, so long as it does not infringe upon the rights of others.


That more and more Muslim women are opting to cover up – be it in the form of the hijab, the abaya or the niqab – does not warrant alarmist discourses. What should alarm all Sri Lankans is the daily record of rapes, sexual harassment of women and the growing insecurity for women, particularly those in the North. According to Women for Rights, every 90 minutes a woman is raped in Sri Lanka and an estimated 95% of women using public transportation are at risk of being sexually harassed.


What should be of concern to all Sri Lankans is the free accessibility to pornographic material (flowing in mainly from the West); in particular our children’s exposure to such destructive material which teaches them all the wrong things about sex. Even the screening of the sick-filth movie ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’, which glorifies the sexual exploitation of women, in Sri Lankan theatres did not attract the condemnation and opposition that it ought to have.


In view of much bigger and more pressing social problems, the veil is something that should neither worry those outside the Muslim community nor those within community who do not consider it an Islamic requirement. The veil – or particular types of it – is simply a piece of fabric; it does not in any way pose a threat to peace, stability and multi-culturalism.


And what does multi-culturalism really mean? It means respect for diversity, especially respect for religious and racial differences, not cultural assimilation. This includes respecting someone else’s interpretation of his or her religious obligations.


Moreover, identity is not something that is fixed. It is fluid and changes over time. The position that the items of clothing in focus, the niqab in particular, are imports from the Middle-East and do not form part of the traditional Sri Lankan Muslim woman’s attire begs the questions: what is traditional Sri Lankan Muslim attire anyway, and where did it originate from? Is it the saree? Is it the shalwar kameez? Are they not imports from India and Pakistan? And what about jeans and shorts? Should we, in similar vein, also be worried about women wearing Western attire on the premise that they are imports from the West and have nothing to do with traditional Sri Lankan attire? Taken to extreme lengths, does it then also mean that Sri Lankan Muslims should stop giving their children names of Arab origin?


The crucial point here is that a woman’s body is her business, and if she chooses to cover it up completely, it should not become a problem for anyone else. Attire is a personal judgement call; some women prefer to be seen in public with less clothing while others prefer a lot more. Ultimately, it is the woman who should make that decision.


With time, practices evolve. If women choose to shed the veil, then that too is their decision. But they must have the right to wear it if they want to. Let us not be so fixated on the Islamic dress-code and try to link it with radicalisation or extreme political violence without any concrete empirical evidence to establish such a link. There is no need to grossly over-react to a threat that is not there.


A study released last week by the International Centre for Ethnic Studies (ICES) in Colombo affirms that there is no real evidence to suggest that a jihadist movement exists in the East. The ICES study entitled ‘Fracturing Community: Intra-group relations among the Muslims of Sri Lanka’ authored by Mohamed Faslan and Nadine Vanniasinkam also points out, “the minority Muslim community is largely considered (by the majority communities) as a religiously homogeneous group when, in fact, they are splintered into various denominations which espouse different interpretations of Islam, values and practices. This ignorance of the plurality within the Muslim community and its internal politics could be a contributing factor to much of the prejudices held by individuals against the community.”
The paper further notes that “the ‘performance’ of difference among Muslim groups, visible in the form of jubbas, hijabs, niqabs, beards and the increasing number of mosques, has created an illusion of an increase in the Muslim population, adding to the fear and suspicion of the majority towards the motives of the Muslim community and its ‘repressive’ culture. These individual prejudices have in turn been manipulated by extremist nationalist groups like the Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) to incite hatred towards and violence against the Muslim community.”


If anyone intolerantly incites hatred, makes inflammatory remarks and thereby promotes communal violence (in the manner the BBS did triggering the Aluthgama riots in June 2014), then that is certainly something to be concerned about. Such persons should be dealt with under the laws of the land. 
The words of Palestinian-American peace activist Linda Sarsour certainly rings true for Sri Lankan Muslims today: “We’re working too hard to be accepted instead of working hard to be respected”.
Islamophobia has been on the rise for some time now; let us refrain from unwittingly contributing to its sustenance.
(Comments can be emailed to: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it )

http://www.dailymirror.lk/107264/-Radicalisation-among-Sri-Lankan-Muslims

Login Form