SRINAGAR: Globally followed Islamic scholar, Ismail Ibn Musa Menk has responded to virtual criticism of his Kashmir visit during which he solemnised the nikkah of Mursleen Pirzada and Yawar Mir. His office has written a brief response to the Srinagar newspaper, Kashmir Observer saying the Zimbabwean head of the fatwa department would never consider visiting Kashmir again.
Menk’s aides have said that he flew to Srinagar for one and a half-day at his own costs during which he met 350 Ulema and other locals. Given the fact that his arrival coincided with the murdering of teachers, Mufti Menk did not move out at all. The next day, before and after the nikkah, the letter said he met Ulema.
“We are not aware of the finer details of Kashmiri politics or even the names and details of current or past politicians and what they do or the reputation of each one,” the statement carried by the newspaper said. “Mufti Menk did not have a close relationship with any Kashmiris before his visit. He was simply asked while in Dubai if he would come over to officiate a Nikah. He immediately thought it would be a good opportunity to meet with Ulama and Muslims of Kashmir and get to know more about the conditions etc.”
Menk’s office said that it was only after that he flew out that he was told that he had visited the “wrong people”.
“We still don’t know what the internal squabble is among the Muslims and definitely don’t know names of every politician and what he or she is accused of. Had he known in advance that Kashmiri Muslims are so divided within, he would never have visited,” the response letter reads.
“There was no need to swear at our Mufti online and degrade him. People could have simply highlighted that our Mufti was totally unaware of who’s who in Kashmir and the reputation of each one, which is a fact,” the letter said, insisting he did not visit to divide the people or to solve any political matter or interfere or even comment. “May Allah Almighty protect us from Kashmiri gatherings. You never know who might be sitting next to you and the whole of Kashmir will begin to swear at you.”
Reacting to the trolling, the aide wrote to the newspaper: “With the type of comments, abuse and threats received, I doubt he would ever consider visiting Kashmir again.”
Popular in the virtual world and having a huge fan flowing across the Muslim world, adverse commentary on his visit has led Mufti Menk’s office to put the records straight. The response letter says that since it was impossible to visit most places for Islamic lectures, so a wedding ceremony was the next best thing in many cases. The groom and the bride whose nikkah, he solemnized are wards of two Kashmir politicians.