A.R. Rahman has been issued a fatwa for working on Iranian filmmaker Majid Majidi’s Iranian epic film worth $35m based on Prophet Muhammad. The fatwa has been issued by Muhammad Akhtar, the chief mufti of Mumbai.
Saeed Noori, the chief of Raza Academy, a Mumbai-based Sunni Muslim group said:
”We are against the title. People may use it in a bad manner if they don’t like the film, which will mean an insult to the Prophet. The actors have charged money to act in the film and they may have a dubious character in real life. How can we Muslims allow such things to happen?”
He also pointed out that the entire crew of the film is Muslim and so, it was important to highlight their mistake.
The Raza Academy had planned on meeting Home Minister Rajnath Singh and External Affairs Minister, Sushma Swaraj, to demand a ban on this film across India. Indian musical gem, A.R. Rahman was dragged into the controversy as the said music maker has hurt the feelings of all Muslims by working on the movie.
A week since the fatwa was filed, A.R. Rahman decided to take his stand by uploading a letter addressed to all who have been involved in the controversy.
He says he composed the music for the film “in good faith and with no intention of causing offence”.
Here is what he wrote:
“I am not a scholar of Islam. I follow the middle path and am part traditional and part rationalist. I live in the Western and Eastern worlds and try to love all people for what they are, without judging them,” said the double Grammy winner.
“I didn’t direct or produce the movie Muhammad: Messenger of God. I just did the music. My spiritual experiences of working on the film are very personal and I would prefer not to share these.”
“My decision to compose the music for this film was made in good faith and with no intention of causing offence. In fact the decision [to compose music for the film] was based on a similar point of view as expressed by Mr Noorie. What, and if, I had the good fortune of facing Allah, and He were to ask me on Judgement Day: ‘I gave you faith, talent, money, fame and health… why did you not do music for my beloved Muhammad film? A film whose intention is to unite humanity, clear misconceptions and spread my message that life is kindness, about uplifting the poor, and living in the service of humanity and not mercilessly killing innocents in my name’.”
”Today there is a blur between the real world and the virtual world and I have been taken aback to see that, for some years now, unethical, unacceptable and unkind remarks are made online concerning the Holy Prophet.”
“We are indeed fortunate and blessed to live in a country like India where religious freedom is practiced and where the aim of all communities is to life in peace and harmony sans confusion and violence.”
“Let us set a precedent in clearing conflict with grace and dignity and not trigger violence in words or actions. Let us pray for forgiveness, and from our hearts bless those who suffer in the world and bless the country that we live in. To so pray is to reflect the noble and enlightened nature of our beloved Muhammad.”
No reply could as good as this one. Rahman has intelligently proved his point to all who like to create friction between people in the name of religion. Now waht we await is a reply to A.R. Rahman’s letter.
News Source: Hindustan Times