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Naseeruddin Shah questions those “celebrating Taliban’s return”

Seasoned actor and director Naseeruddin Shah questioned those Indian Muslims who celebrated Taliban assuming power in Afghanistan

Categorically condemning  those who are euphoric with the Taliban assuming power in Afghanistan, noted film, theatre and television actor Naseeruddin Shah, has said that these celebrations by a section of Indian Muslims isdangerous.

In a video which has gone viral on social media, the actor said: "Even as the Taliban's return to power in Afghanistan is a cause for concern for the whole world, celebrations of the barbarians by some sections of Indian Muslims is no less dangerous.”

Born in a Pashtun family in Uttar Pradesh, the 71-year-old seasoned artist questioned those rejoicing in India about what they want. He said: "they want to reform their religion or live with the old barbarism".

Highlighting the distinction between what he termed “Hindustani Islam” and what is being practised in other parts of the world, Shah said the former was different. Questioning every Indian Muslim he said, each of them must ask themselves if they desired a reformed, modern Islam — “jiddat pasandi modernity” — or “vaishipan” the barbaric values of the past centuries.

Hoping that Hindustani Islam does not change he said: "May God not bring a time when it changes so much that we cannot even recognise it".

The actor who played the character of Mirza Ghalib in the TV serial quoted the legendary poet-philosopher and said: “I am an Indian Muslim and, as Mirza Ghalib said years ago, my relationship with my God is informal. I don’t need political religion.”

Also read: Muslims need higher education: Madani

Last week prominent civil society members had called the euphoria exhibited by certain sections in India after Afghanistan was taken over by Taliban as “deeply disturbing”.

In a statement  signed by 128 people including lyricist Javed Akhtar and veteran actors Shabana Azmi and Naseeruddin Shah — said that it rejects the “idea of a theocratic state anywhere in the world”.