NEW DELHI: A prominent Indian clerics body said on Tuesday that women are inferior to men because men can’t bear children, reported Times of India.
“If you want equality why don’t men and women carry pregnancy for 4.5 months each?” asked the (male) secretary of the Jamiat Ulama.
He was speaking in the context of a government proposal to ‘allow’ women over the age of 45 to go on the Hajj pilgrimage without a male member, if they travel in groups of four. This was a suggestion in a proposed Hajj policy drafted by a committee appointed by the Centre.
The draft was submitted to Union Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi two days ago. Since then, a fusillade of protests has erupted from Muslim clerics of all stripes.
Certain clerics criticised the move, calling it ‘un-Islamic’. They said that the motive of the authorities was to “make women work against Sharia (Islamic law)”.
A spokesperson of Dargah Aala Hazrat said it is a ‘sin’ for women to go to Hajj without a male relative.
“It is mandatory for women to be accompanied by the husband or any other male blood relation. If women go alone on Hajj, they will end up committing a sin, which is the motive of the authorities. As Hajj is one of the five pillars of Islam, it should be done according to Sharia and women cannot go without mehram (close male blood relation),” said Mufti Mohammed Salim Noori of the Dargah Aala Hazrat.
Another cleric said Muslim women should follow Islamic rules not laws laid down by politicians. And yet another cleric said he would write to minister Naqvi. “We will write to Naqvi and ask him not to give permission to women to go on Hajj alone,” said Shahbudin Razvi of the Jamat Raza-e-Mustafa.
Story first published: 11th October 2017