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Muslims in Maharashtra deserve reservation: Maulana Ilyas Khan Falahi

Mumbai, Jan. 2: The President of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind (JIH), Maharashtra, Maulana Ilyas Khan Falahi has demanded reservation for the Muslim community in the state.

Addressing the media at the JIH state headquarters in Mumbai, Maulana Ilyas Khan said, “The government of Maharashtra should seriously consider giving Muslims 5% reservation in education and government jobs.

“We feel that due to the systematic neglect of successive governments, the entire Muslim community of Maharashtra has been pushed away to the sidelines in terms of economic development and higher education. There is no dearth of official data to support this assertion that Muslims are lagging in most socio-economic indices. The Sachar Committee Report and the Mehmood-Ur-Rehman Committee Report strongly recommended the route of affirmative action (reservation) for the upliftment of the Muslim community.

“One may recall that the previous Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government had decided to give 5% reservation to Muslims in education. We appeal to political parties to include this demand in their manifestos for the upcoming elections. Jamaat feels that implementing the right to quality education is a long-term solution to the existing reservation system.”

Addressing the question of communal harmony in the state, the JIH Maharashtra President said, “We are concerned about the current situation in the state. Although there has not been any major communal conflagration, there have been many provocative hate speeches given by anti-social elements who claim to be speaking for the majority community. Social media is being misused by the IT Cell of the ruling party to create hatred against the Muslim community and spread misconceptions regarding their religion.

“The police and the administration must comply with the instructions of the Supreme Court of India which directed States to take suo motu action by registering FIRs on hate speeches without waiting for a complaint to be lodged by someone. The apex court even went so far as to say that if there is any hesitation by the police to implement their order then it would be viewed as contempt of court.”

Maulana Ilyas Khan Falahi also expressed grave concern over the attempts by the BJP to repeal the Waqf Act 1995, through the introduction of the Waqf Repeal Bill 2022.

He said, “We feel that any attempt to tamper with the constitutionally guaranteed right of the Muslim community to administer the properties under Waqf is not correct. It will be highly unjust, destroy the communal fabric of our country, and create divisions in society, which cannot be permitted. Doing away with Waqf will increase the feeling of insecurity and alienation in the Muslims.”

To the question of the proposed demolition of Sunehri Masjid by NDMC in New Delhi, the JIH Maharashtra President said, “Instead of demolishing the Masjid, NDMC should take expert opinion and check the feasibility of alternative solutions like constructing a roundabout around the Masjid, an underground tunnel or an overhead flyover. The Sunehri Masjid is a magnificent Heritage Building of great historical value. Protecting Sunehri Masjid is the responsibility of the NDMC, which is under the control of both the Central Government and the Government of Delhi.”

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