West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday urged the Muslims not to wave swords or any other weapons during Muharram. Reports said that the ruling Trinamool Congress party reached out to the leaders of the Muslim community and urged them to persistently avoid carrying the swords during the processions as some communal forces like Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) are trying to instigate trouble. The party leaders also stated that the practice has not been described anywhere in Islam. On September 21, several Shia Muslims will whip themselves with chains and swords to mark the killing of Prophet Muhammad’s grandson Hussian in the Battle of Karbala in the seventh Century.
Earlier on September 10, Banerjee government declared a gift of Rs 10,000 each to the 28,000 Durga Puja committees across the state. The state government announced a total expenditure of Rs 28 crore for community development programmes for the forthcoming Durga Puja celebrations.
Interestingly, Maulana Shafique Qasmi, the Imam of Kolkata’s Nakhoda mosque also urged the Muslim Community not to carry swords during the Muharram progression. Another Imam from Asansol, Maulana Imdadul Rashidi claimed that it is “un-Islamic” to use swords during Muharram.
Meanwhile, the Congress party is also leaving no stone unturned to woo the voters for the upcoming assembly elections in Telangana. The party on Thursday declared that if the party will come into power it will develop the state as a religious tourism hub. The party is most likely to include this in the party manifesto. The announcement came soon after the PCC chief Kamal Nath announced that the Congress will undertake the Pam Gaman Path.
In 2017, a huge controversy erupted over Durga Puja collided with the Muharram. During that time, Mamata Banerjee had ordered the Durga Puja organisers to ask for an permission from the government for idol immersion as it collided with Muharram.