Tuesday, April 25, 2023

Adieu Tarek Fatah: You Took On The Mullahs, But Succumbed To The Hindu Right

By Sumit Paul, New Age Islam 25 April 2023 I may sound outright caustic, but the fact remains that a majority of Muslims across the globe have heaved a sigh of relief and said, good riddance, following the demise of Islam's trenchant and most vocal critic Tarek Fatah. Tarek Fatah ----- As his name ' Fatah' (triumph) suggests, Tarek triumphed over the primitive and parochial religiosity of Islam and its palpable obscurantism that still exists even after more than 14 centuries. Never given to mincing words, Tarek called a spade a spade, nay a shovel and took the marauding bison of Islam by the horns. Tarek was a relentless crusader and an indomitable champion of human rights. He was an indefatigable reformer who was often mistaken for an apostate (Murtad) or atheist (Ilhadi). Unlike Salman Rushdie, Ibn Warraq, Ali Dashti or Ayan Hirsi Ali who all left Islam and turned nonbelievers, Tarek remained in the fold of Islam and called himself a liberal and latitudinarian Muslim who questioned every belief or tenet he felt uncomfortable with. Whether it was the issue of the fundamental rights of LGBT community, punishment for Zina (adultery) or conversion of minorities in Pakistan, Tarek always raised his voice. He had the honesty to admit in public that the Muslims of the subcontinent were emotionally as well as biologically closer to their Hindu brethren than they were to the Arabs. He further added that since most of the Muslims of the subcontinent had Hindu ancestors, they (Muslims) must never forget their roots. A majority of Muslims, weaned and fed on Zakir Naik's hateful diet of Wahhabi and Salafist Islam of Saudi Arabia, didn't like it. But there's no gainsaying the fact that a handful of sane and sensible Muslims always tacitly agreed with his unbridled views. A number of fatwas (edicts) couldn't dampen his courage and zeal. Tarek always remained unperturbed and till the end, he believed in Nietzschean dictum of living dangerously. He was the first person to suggest that the name of Delhi's Aurangzeb Road must immediately be changed. A vocal critic of Pakistan, Tarek always rued his parents' decision to migrate to Pakistan. He left Pakistan in 1987 and settled in Canada where he breathed his last. I became his fan when I read his book, " The Jew is not my Enemy: Unveiling the myths that fuel Muslim anti-Semitism." Every Muslim must read this book to disabuse himself/herself of the innate and implacable hatred for the Jews and Judaism. Though the 'striker'/'knocker' (the name Tariq- Toye, Alif, Re, Qaaf, in Arabic means, a striker/knocker/morning star) has gone, his views will continue to strike like a blitzkrieg and he'll always remain as distinct as a morning star. Au revoir, Tariq Saheb. ----- A regular columnist for New Age Islam, Sumit Paul is a researcher in comparative religions, with special reference to Islam. He has contributed articles to the world's premier publications in several languages including Persian. URL: https://newageislam.com/current-affairs/tarek-fatah-fanatics-liberals/d/129642 New Age Islam, Islam Online, Islamic Website, African Muslim News, Arab World News, South Asia News, Indian Muslim News, World Muslim News, Women in Islam, Islamic Feminism, Arab Women, Women In Arab, Islamophobia in America, Muslim Women in West, Islam Women and Feminism

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