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Govt issues directives to end Tabligh Jamaat internal dispute

  • Published at 12:27 am September 24th, 2018
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The conflict between two factions of Tabligh Jamaat had led to violent clashes on Kakrail Mosque premises in Dhaka last November Rajib Dhar/ Dhaka Tribune

The Religious Affairs Ministry’s circular has called for an end to the crisis by ensuring coexistence of the two groups and stopping propagandas, among other steps

The government has issued five directives to resolve the internal disputes of Tabligh Jamaat and carry out their activities in an organized manner.

Signed by Religious Affairs Ministry Deputy Secretary Delwara Begum, a circular carrying the directives was released on September 18.

The circular was sent to the markazes of Tabligh situated in different parts of the country, along with the divisional commissioners, deputy commissioners and superintendents of police of the concerned divisions and districts.

The government move came after the Islamic non-political organization’s Bangladesh chapter divided into two groups following disputes among its top leaders centring establishment of dominance and the visit of Maulana Saad Kandhalvi of India, who is known for making controversial statements, during the last Bishwa Ijtema.

The conflict had also led to violent clashes between the factions on the premises of Kakrail Mosque in Dhaka in November last year.

The Religious Affairs Ministry’s circular has called for an end to the crisis by ensuring coexistence of the two groups and stopping propagandas, among other steps.

The five government directives are-

1. The two Tabligh factions will carry out their activities on different days every week at the markazes in all districts and upazilas – including the ones at Kakrail Mosque and the Tongi Ijtema Ground – following discussions and recommendations from local administrations.

However, if any faction wants, they will also be able to hold their programs at different mosques or some other places following recommendations from local administrations.

2. No faction will spread any written or oral propaganda against the other faction in line with the ideals and traditional values of Tabligh Jamaat

3. Religious preaching will take place at all mosques around the country peacefully like before, and for that jamaats from both factions will be allowed to visit the same mosque. However, since it is not logical for either faction’s local or foreign jamaats to stay in the same mosque at the same time, whichever faction’s jamaat comes first will have preference. The other faction’s jamaat will go to another mosque. 

4. Both factions will be able to invite local and foreign dignitaries to participate in the Ijtema or their own programs. Neither of the groups will create any obstacles in each other's activities.

5. Local administration will mediate and resolve any conflict between the factions, if such situation arises, in any area after hearing arguments from both sides.

The circular also said that Tabligh Jamaat activities around the world were known as a non-violent, peaceful and completely religious. However, the directives have been issued as recently a visible split in the organization has spread conflict in two factions across the country, which goes against religious customs and overall peaceful environment.

Currently, the followers of Maulana Saad Kandhalvi in the country are not allowed in Tabligh Jamaat Bangladesh chapter’s markaz Kakrail Mosque. The situation had created tension in Dhaka at the end of 2017.

The tension is still lingering in Tabligh Jamaat.

The Religious Affairs Ministry’s circular came after top police officials, government ministers and MPs held discussions with both factions to resolve the conflict.