India: Are Ahmadis oblivious to Islamic Radicalisation in Kerala?
Ahmadi Muslims are in a minority and persecuted everywhere, and one is left wondering if the current phase in their spiritual life represents the Mecca period of early Islam, purely non-violent.
Dr. Salahuddin is the emir of Ahmadiyya Jamaat based in Kozhikode. If one were to believe his interpretation of current affairs, there is peace everywhere and Kerala is a paradise. When coaxed to explain some conflicts among Muslims, he does open up saying: “Salafism in Kerala is not the same as Salafism in other countries. They do not support terrorism here, but due to splits in the Salafi movement, some might go the radical way.” Asked about the response of Muslims towards Ahmadis, he adds: “There is no problem faced by the community as in Pakistan, but when we go for preaching, there is some opposition based on doctrinal beliefs.” There are also occasional reports of Ahmadi Muslims being beaten up in Karnataka and Kerala.
As for Ahmadi Muslims themselves, their beliefs respect spiritual leaders of all communities. “Insofar as Ahmadi Muslim view is concerned, all persons who are held high by a community for centuries they have to be respected by all Muslims. We say Alayhi As-Salaam (peace be upon him) for Buddha, Confucius, Rama and Krishna,” Dr. Salahuddin says and stresses that even non-Ahmadi Muslims pray alongside Ahmadis in his mosque. But Ahmadi Muslims are in a minority and persecuted everywhere, and one is left wondering if the current phase in their spiritual life represents the Mecca period of early Islam, purely non-violent.
Former BBC journalist Tufail Ahmad is executive director of the Open Source Institute, New Delhi. He tweets @tufailelif
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