An Interview with Haider Farooq Mawdudi, Noted Pakistani Islamic Scholar

Haider Farooq Mawdudi, noted Pakistani Islamic scholar and son of the Late Maulana Sayed-ul-Ala Mawdudi, founder of the Jamaat-e-Islami(JEI), is one of the most vocal critics of the protagonists of 'Jihad' in Kashmir. In an interview given to a Lahore based Urdu magazine 'Diwar-e-Shahar' (August-September, 1998) he has openly come out against the present JEI leadership of Pakistani for supporting militancy in Kashmir. He has refuted 'Jihad' in Kashmir on the grounds that its against the tenets of the Quran as Islam does not permit a covert war. In this connection, quoting his father's stand on the issue, he points out that the double standards in Pakistani policy of pursuing diplomatic relations with India while waging a 'Jihad' against it through covert means. He also castigated the JEI leadership of Pakistan for spending huge amounts on waging 'Jihad' in Kashmir and sacrificing the lives of thousands of innocent and poor people. Excerpts from the interview is reproduced below.

The Lucknow based vernacular weekly, 'Jedeed Markaz', published in Urdu and Hindi, has reproduced the said interview on its October 25-31, 1998 edition.

Question: In what connection, did you visit India recently and who all did you meet and why?

Answer: I met different Muslim leaders, including Kashmiris during my recent visit to India and expressed the view that three wars have been fought between India and Pakistan over Kashmir since their inception fifty years back and therefore, the Kashmir issue should now be solved at any cost and the Kashmiri Muslims should get the same benefits which are being enjoyed by the other Muslims living in India. I told the Kashmiri leaders that they were getting their young generation killed without any reason. The education, economy and everything of Muslims is being destroyed. I asked them to hold talks with the Indian government and get their demands met legitimately and constitutionally.

Question: Haider Shahji, what sort of opinion you have given there? On one hand, holy 'Jihad' is being fought in Kashmir while as you are talking about constitutional right, education and economy.

Answer: (Retorting back) What kind of 'Jihad' is being fought in Kashmir, you do not know the difference between 'Jihad' and violence. The ongoing blood-bath in Kashmir in the name of 'Jihad' can not even be termed as 'Khurooj'(revolt). You should study the 'Fiqah'(Islamic Law).

Question: But the 'Jamaat' of your father, Maulana Abdul Ala Mawdudi declares it as 'Jihad'.

Answer: Now, this is no more the 'Jamaat' of my father, this is now the 'Jamaat' of Qazi Hussain Ahmad. My father had categorically refused to accept the ongoing violence in Kashmir as 'Jihad'.

Question: What are you talking about? Kashmiris are fighting for their right of self-determination, which has been bluntly rejected by India. The Britishers gave Kashmir to India through a wrongful partition, which Nehru, Mountbatten and Radcliffe had committed through dishonesty?

Answer: Maulana Mawdudi, in his interview published in the bi-weekly journal of Jamaat-e-Islami, "Kausar" dated August 17, 1998, has clearly said that the intricacies developed over the Kashmiri issue are the result of the mistakes of 'our' leaders who accepted an ambiguous condition of the Britishers that the accession of any 'Riyasat' to a country would be decided by the Head of the 'Riyasat' and not only by the dominion of the 'Riyasat'. They also left the decision regarding the fixation of borders to Radcliffe and Mountbatten which resulted in the inclusion of Gurdaspur district in the Indian union and it also gave an opportunity to the Hindu King of Kashmir to accede to India.

Question: Haider Saheb, you said that it is not lawful according to 'Shariat' to fight against that country with whom 'we' have diplomatic relations?

Answer: Don't degrade its importance. I have not said that but Maulana Mawdudi said this. I do not possess such a personality. Maulana Mawdudi has categorically stated that according to 'Quran', it is unlawful to wage a war by a country against the country with which diplomatic relations are maintained. He has further said that it one party commits breach of agreement then the opposite party should first severe diplomatic ties with it and then resort to war-tactics instead of maintaining diplomatic relations overtly and resorting to war-tactics covertly. He stressed that Islam taught 'us' that if we, want to fight against anyone, 'we' should fight openly and if 'we' wish to maintain friendly relations with someone, 'we' should stick to that relation without any prejudice.

Question: Haider Sahab, Maulana Mawdudi was a giant personality and a great religious scholar. We should talk about present scenario. Jamaat-e-Islami is still spending a lot on 'Jehad-e-Kashmir' also rendering sacrifices?

Answer: Yes, presently the situation is such that Jamaat receives Rs. 60,000/- for every militant killed in Kashmir out this, only 15,000-20,000/- are being given to the families of the martyrs, while as the remaining amount is eaten up by the JEI leaders themselves who have opened a factory of martyrs. JEI leaders have made money by getting others children killed. As far as they themselves are concerned, no son of Qazi Hussain Ahmad was killed either in Afghanistan or Kashmiri, 'Jihad' and his children are leading a luxurious life while studying in the United States.

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