Salman Rushdie and the Khalifa

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The stabbing of Salman Rushdie in New York reminds me of this story.


Feeding the poor and needy is an act that draws us closer to Allah. We earn His forgiveness, mercies and blessings through this act of charity.

“Anyone who looks after and works for a widow and a poor person is like a warrior fighting for Allah?s cause, or like a person who fasts during the day and prays all night. (Bukhari)

At the time of the Iranian Fatwa against Salman Rushdie many journalists in London wanted to get the opinion of Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad, Khalifatul Masih IV, supreme Head of the worldwide Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, on this fatwa.

The requests were so many that Hazoor, as the Khalifa is fondly called by his followers, arranged for a Press Conference. The room was full. Journalists of the UK press were there, as well as representatives of TV stations and International Press Agencies.

The journalists asked Hazoor what he thought about the Iranian Fatwa, calling for the assassination of Salman Rushdie.

Hazoor explained, based on the Quran, that there was no reason for a call for a death sentence. He proved on the basis of the Quran that there is not death penaltiy for blasphemy or any ‘dishonour to the Prophet’ (peace and blessings of Allah be on him).

After more than one hour of questions and answers Hazoor asked the journalists present whether they were now satisfied with his answers. All answered in the affirmative.

And the Hazoor said

and now I will tell you one thing more. Tomorrow there will be no News on your TV stations or newspapers of what I told you, because you came to hear that I would say ‘Death to Salman Rushdie’. As I told you that there was no such directions in Islam and the Quran you did not hear what you came for and therefore nothing will be in the press tomorrow.

The journalists of course assured Hazur that they would not go and write their articles and prepare their TV clips, but, as Hazur stated, nothing of what he said was in the press the day after.

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