Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir Police on Tuesday filed an FIR against online abusers of the all-girl music band Pragaash, said sources. The police action came after an SMS threat was circulated against the all-girl band. The rock band was forced to disband after a fatwa was issued against them on Monday from the J&K Grand Mufti. An angry chief minister Omar Abdullah told CNN-IBN that the fatwa is against spirit of Kashmiriyat and promised full security to the girls if they wish to continue singing.
During a debate with IBN18 Editor-in-Chief Rajdeep Sardesai, Shabnam Lone said, "The Mufti has given a fatwa, is he a Constitutional authority? He is not. Now why were the things allowed to go far beyond the point where these girls are in hiding now?"
Actor Aamir Bashir questioned as to what is taking the state government so long to act against such diktats. "Wherever the state has failed you will find these elements, which are fringe elements. The state has all the power and the state abuses that power all the time in Kashmir. They become like lambs. 'Oh we don't know, it's up to the girls', what do you mean it's up to the girls. If somebody has published a threat, a life threatening threat, what are you waiting for," Bashir questioned.
The band on Monday decided to quit after a fatwa was issued against them by the valley's Grand Mufti, Bashir-ud-Din, who said that women must live in purdah at all times. Blaming women for the increase in crimes against them, he said that women must desist from performing in public as otherwise, there will be no difference between "our women and film actresses".
The opposition party in Jammu and Kashmir, People's Democratic Party's Mehbooba Mufti too slammed the fatwa against the girls saying it was unreasonable. She urged the state government to intervene and take action.
Naeem Akhtar of the PDP said, "Mufti sahab has made it a habit of issuing fatwas on every thing. It gives Islam a bad name. Music is an intrinsic part of Kashmir's culture, we have had many great singers."
Najma Heptullah of the BJP said, "If God has given talent to someone, then to use God's name to put a ban on it is wrong." This came after Kashmir's Grand Mufti condemned the first girl rock band and issued a fatwa against them, saying music is bad for the society and women must be under a veil at all times.
The valley's Grand Mufti, while issuing the fatwa to the band, called for women in the country to wear a veil at all times. Mufti Maulana Bashir-U-Din went on to say that public performances by women are un-Islamic and obscene.