AZAAN ROW IN INDIA Sonu Nigam shaves off hair after azaan row, Muslim cleric asks why he is not wearing garland of shoes.
Posted on April 20th, 2017

Courtesy Indian Express

Sonu Nigam shaves off hair after azaan row, Muslim cleric asks why he is not wearing garland of shoes. 

Sonu Nigam shaved off his hair on Wednesday in response to a Muslim cleric who announced a reward of Rs 10 lakh to anyone who could tonsure the singer. The controversy started after Sonu’s azaan Twitter rant.

Sonu Nigam shaved off his head during a media interaction in Mumbai on Wednesday after a Muslim cleric announced a reward of Rs 10 lakh for anyone who will tonsure the singer. The call came after Sonu’s Monday tweets on being woken up by morning azaan and calling it ‘forced religiousness and gundagardi’. Sonu speaking to media said that he was not criticising any religion, instead he was raising a social topic about use of loudspeakers. Azaan is important, not loudspeaker. Arti is important, not loudspeaker,” the Bollywood singer said clearly and concisely while reaffirming his secular credentials. Moments later, he went and shaved off his hair.

I’ll shave my head in a while. It’s not a challenge. It’s a request. What are you doing in this country? I am a believer but I don’t think my religion is the best but yours isn’t. I don’t believe in that. You have to fight fanaticism, you can’t be quiet. I have requested Alim (celeb stylist Aalim Hakim) to come. He will shave my head but this isn’t any agitation or challenge. The one who is cutting hair is a Muslim and I am a Hindu. There is no animosity. The same language of fatwa can be communicated in a language of love. Being secular means understanding each other’s problems and not saying ‘I am only right.’”

The cleric, Syed Sha Atef Ali Al Quaderi, was not satisfied though. Speaking to ANI, he said, Sonu Nigam has not done all the things I asked for, two out of the three things remain unfulfilled. Will give reward of Rs 10 lakh, only when he does rest two-garland of old torn shoes and tour around the country.” Quaderi had announced in an interview to DNA that he would give an award of Rs 10 lakh who could shave his (Sonu Nigam) hair, put a garland of old torn shoes around his neck and tour him around the country.”

Talking about his own tweet, Sonu said, Everyone has right to his opinion and I only spoke about loudspeakers. I spoke about a social issue, not any religion. I said it for temples, gurudwaras and mosques, why is it so hard to comprehend?” Sonu asked the media.

See pictures of Sonu Nigam after he shaved off his hair

Talking about religion, the singer said, I am very secular, I am not right or left wing. I stand in between. Most are right and left wing people but people in the middle are less. I’ve never had to make a speech like this. I just raised a social topic, not a religious topic. When loudspeakers are installed in religious places, it is sort of a declaration that ‘this is my religion’. Same goes for people dancing on roads drunk during religious processions. I am against that.”

Hitting out at religious fanatics who had questioned him for mentioning Prophet Mohammad in the tweet, he said, People are asking why I said Mohammad and not Mohammad Sahab in my tweets. Well, I would like to explain that it is the problem of explaining myself in English language. In Hindi I will see Krishnaji or Shivji but while speaking in English it becomes Krishna or Shiva. It was the same when mentioning Mohammad. My intent was not to slam the prophet in any way.”

Also read| Sonu Nigam azaan row: Sonu to get his head shaved to claim Rs 10 lakh reward from Muslim cleric

When questioned how he justifies performing in jaagrans that also use loudspeakers, Sonu said that those religious functions get over by 10 pm as per government regulation. Yes, I sing at jaagrans but they are over by 10 pm as per government rules. It is all about timing and when I sing at religious events, I ensure rules are followed.”

Full Report & Sonu Nigam tweeted on Monday

Sonu Nigam shaves off hair after azaan row, Muslim cleric asks why he is not wearing garland of shoes. See pics

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