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    » 11/07/2011, 00.00

    INDIA – ISLAM

    Deoband seminary issues fatwa against birthdays



    The leading centre for Islamic studies in India, and one of the most famous in the world, slams the practice of celebrating birthdays, a “tradition of Western countries” that is contrary to Sharia.
    Muzaffarnagar (AsiaNews/Agencies) – A leading Islamic seminary, the Darul Uloom Deoband (pictured), has advised Muslims against celebrating birthdays, issuing a fatwa saying that Islam does not permit the practice, which is a "tradition of Western countries".

    Responding to a query of a student, the fatwa department of the country's biggest Islamic seminary said that Islam does not permit such celebrations as they are against the Sharia.The query was made in reference to the birthday celebration of Sir Syed Ahmed Khan, the founder of the Aligarh Muslim University.

    "Muslims should not follow the tradition of Western culture of celebrating birthdays as it against the Sharia," Vice-Chancellor of Darul Uloom Deoband, Maulana Abul Kasim Naumani said.

    Naumani added that even the Islamic seminary does not celebrate the birth anniversary of the Prophet Mohammed, the founder of the religion.

    Deobandi (literally of the city of Deoband) is a Muslim religious movement present in the Indian subcontinent and Afghanistan that follows the Hanafi legal school (madhhab).

    Their main institution is a seminary in the Indian city of Deoband, in Sahāranpur District (Uttar Pradesh), about 140 km northeast of Delhi.

    The school, the Darul Uloom Deoband, was established in 1865 by Hājjī Muhammad ‘Abīd Husayn and three other Islamic scholars. It is considered one of the foremost religious schools in the Muslim world.

    It hosts up to 1,500 students and its library is endowed with some 70,000 traditional legal books, prints and manuscripts.
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