Barelvi Muslims’ fatwa on the Udaipur murder: beheading is illegal

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Barelli: In response to the beheading of the tailor, Kanhaiya Lal, by two villagers who were allegedly motivated by extremist Barelvi Islam preachers of Pakistan-based Dawat-e-Islami, the Barelvi sect from Uttar Pradesh’s Bareilly issued a fatwa, a non-binding legal opinion in Islam.

According to Maulana Shahabuddin Razvi, the national secretary-general of Barelvi Ulema, Aala Hazrat has decided that if someone kills someone while living under an Islamic government “without the consent of the emperor,” they are guilty of a crime under Sharia law and must face severe punishment.

He continued by saying that under non-Islamic administrations, such assassinations would be considered illegal by local law, and the individual perpetrating the act would endanger his life. Razvi emphasised that Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan, a far-right Islamic extremist political party in the neighbouring country, was the original source of the slogans calling for the execution of people who insult the Prophet in order to further their political aspirations. Muslims should protest to the government instead of acting on their own to enforce the law, continued Razvi.

In a video where the two were bragging about the murder, the killers of Kanhaiya Lal could be heard shouting, “Gustakhi e Nabi ki Ek Hi Saza, Sar Tan se Juda Sar Tan se Juda,” or “There is only punishment for insult to the Prophet, beheading.”

Barelvi Muslims issued this fatwa against the Kanhaiya Lal murders after some people began equating Islam teaching and beheading. The fatwa made reference to the writings of Aala Hazrat, also known as Ahmed Raza Khan Barelvi, a 19th-century Islamic thinker.