Reports: Islamic Clerics Issue Fatwa Against Indian Song for Mentioning Mohammed’s Wife

HYDERABAD: Police in Hyderabad on Wednesday registered a case for hurting religious sentiments of Muslims against the director of a Malayalam movie, whose song featuring actress Priya Prakash Varrier has gone viral.

An Islamic seminary has reportedly issued a fatwa against a song by a young Malayam singer for referencing Mohammed’s wife in a popular movie trailer.

The Islamic seminary, Jamia Nizamia, reportedly issued the fatwa against the song “Manikya Malaraya Poovi,” sung by 18-year-old singer Priya Prakash Varrier, featured in the trailer for the upcoming film Oru Adaar Love.

The 28-second clip of Nizamia singing, which allegedly makes “objectionable references” to a love story between Muhammad and his wife Khadijah, has already racked up over 20 million views on YouTube.

“Our objection is not for the film, but for the song which has references to Prophet Mohammad and his wife Khadijah Bibi,” Ahmed Ali, general secretary of the Jamia Nizamia, said, according to the Hindustan Times. “The director should have used some other characters to depict the love. Why should he take the name of the Prophet?”

Muslims also filed a complaint at the Falaknuma police station against the filmmakers for violating Section 295a of the Indian Penal Code, which outlaws the deliberate insulting of religious beliefs.

“I don’t want any publicity. After all, I am a small student (doing engineering) who is not willing to take to streets or organize people,” engineering student Mohammed Abdul Muqeeth Khan told the Mumbai Mirror. “I went through the lyrics and tried to understand it. I approached Google translation. There is the name of our Prophet’s wife, Khadijah Bibi. Then, I felt I should raise an objection to it.”

The film’s director Omar Lulu and its musical director Shan Rehman held a press conference to confirm that they would not remove the song from the movie.

“The song will not be withdrawn for the time being. It will be part of the movie. There are eight more songs in the film,” Lulu said. “The song written by C M A Jabbar is sung during marriages and every celebration in Malabar region of North Kerala. Malabar Muslims have been singing this song since 1978. If it was not objectionable then, how has it become objectionable now?”

While Muslims remain a minority in India, Sharia adherents have long attempted to impose Islamic blasphemy laws on their communities and have them enforced by the Indian government.

Last year, a similar case saw 42 mullahs have issued a fatwa against Indian Idol contestant Nahid Afrin, who gained notoriety for her statements against the Islamic State, for performing too close to a mosque.

Outrage over religious blasphemy is also not limited to Islam. Last month, Hindu protesters rioted and threatened to burn down movie theaters over the release of the film Padmaavat after becoming infuriated with its depiction of a Rajput queen.

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