Dhaka, June 18 (IANS) Over 400,000 Islamic scholars and Imams in Bangladesh have signed a Fatwa — a ruling under Islamic law — that declares terrorism and suicide attacks as “haram”, or forbidden under Islamic law.
A 32-page booklet comprising the signatures on the Fatwa was brought out on Saturday.
The process for the Fatwa was organised by Farid Uddin Masoud, chairman of Bangladesh Jamiyatul Ullamma, “to raise awareness of the fact that killing in the name of religion is wrong”, Efe news reported.
The booklet was part of a social campaign in response to the recent series of brutal attacks against religious minorities including Shia and Sufi Muslims, Christians and Hindus, journalists, secular bloggers, publishers, foreigners, police and LGBT activists.
The attacks in Bangladesh, a Muslim majority country of 160 million people, began in 2013 and intensified in 2015, claiming more than 40 lives in total.
The most recent episode was on Wednesday when three suspected extremists attacked and seriously wounded a Hindu mathematics teacher at his home in Madaripur, south of Dhaka.
Masoud condemned the attacks and said it was not written in any Islamic scriptures that followers should kill in the name of their religion.
Police last week launched a nationwide crackdown on extremists, arresting more than 11,600 suspects — including 200 alleged terrorists — in a week-long operation.