Irrfan Khan’s comments on Ramadan, Muharram rakes up controversy

Bollywood’s method actor Irrfan Khan has raked up a controversy after he spoke about the traditions of fasting during Ramadan and sacrifice during Muharram.

During the promotions of his upcoming film ‘Madaari’ in Jaipur, the ‘Piku’ actor said that rather than fasting during Ramzan, people should self-introspect. Talking about Bakri Eid, Irrfan said, “Animals are being slaughtered in the name of Qurbaani (sacrifice) during Muharram. “We, Muslims, have made a mockery of Muharram. It is meant for mourning and what we do? Take out (tajiya) processions," a leading publication quoted the actor as saying.

"The meaning of Qurbani is to sacrifice something which is close to you instead of any goat or sheep which you just buy to sacrifice. Before sacrificing we should share a bond with that thing otherwise just killing of an animal will not serve the purpose. Nowadays we have lost the relevance behind such religious activities and perform these rituals without knowing the meaning behind them," Irrfan elaborated.

He also criticised Muslims for not speaking up on the issue of terrorism and also asked them to question politicians over this issue. "Why Muslims are silent against the issue of terrorism. People should also question the politicians over this issue," Irrfan said.

The actor’s opinion earned him the backlash of Muslim clerics who said that he has “no knowledge about religion” and should rather concentrate on his career.

Jaipur's Shaher Qazi (chief jurist), Sher Qazi Khalid Usmani, was quoted as saying, "He should keep his mouth shut as he has no knowledge about the religion." Maulana Abdul Wahid Khatri, state secretary of Jamaat-e-Ulema-e-Hind said, "It would be better if he concentrates on his film career and not make random statements about our religion. He is doing this just for the publicity of his upcoming movie." All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) member Zafaryab Gilabi, who condemned the actor by saying that he is not a religious leader and his advice is not needed.

Meanwhile, Irrfan’s film ‘Madaari’, a social thriller directed by Nishikant Kamat and starring Jimmy Shergill is slated to release on July 15.