Manu worshiped Allah: Jamiat chief Maulana Arshad Madani’s remark sparks controversy

Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind chief Maulana Arshad Madani stoked controversy at the Muslim body’s general assembly on Sunday by claiming that “Om” and “Allah” are the same God worshiped by “Manu” and drew objections from a prominent Jain monk, who stormed off the stage along with a group of other religious leaders.

On the third and final day of the 34th General Assembly of the Jamiat at the Ramlila Maidan, the Muslim cleric who heads the organization’s Arshad Madani faction said that he asked the “Dharma gurus” who they were worshiping there who was not Shri Ram, Brahma or Shiva.

“Some say Manu worshiped Shiva. Very few have pointed out that there is nothing in the world and worshiped Manu Om.

“I asked who Om is, many said: ‘It is only air, it has no form, it has no color and it is everywhere, it made the sky and the land’. I said this is what we Allah call, you call Ishwar, those who speak Persian call Khuda and those who speak English call God,” said Madani.

“It means that Manu, that is Adam, worshiped an Om, that is an Allah,” he said.

Also read | India is mine as well as PM Modi and Bhagwat, this land is the birthplace of Islam: Jamiat chief

Manu is a term found in religious texts that refers to the first man or progenitor of mankind.

Arshad Madani’s comments were strongly disapproved of by Jain monk Acharya Lokesh Muni, who walked out of the session, accusing Madani of digressing from talking about unity and making up a story about “Manu and Allah”.

“We only agree to live in harmony, but all these stories about Om, Allah and Manu are all baseless. He (Madani) completely spoiled the environment of the session,” said Muni.

“The stories he told, I can tell even bigger stories. I would even ask him (Madani) to come to me or even I could come to meet him in Saharanpur,” he said.

“It should be remembered that the first Jain was Tirthankar Rishabh and his sons were Bharata and Bahubali, after whose names this country was named ‘Bharat’… . We do not agree with his (Madani’s) statements,” the Jain monk claimed before exiting the stage along with a group of leaders from other religions.

Religious leaders of multiple religions are often invited to Jamiat programs and meetings. Acharya Lokesh Muni has also been part of several programs organized by Jamiat in the past.

Mahmood Madani, who leads the other Jamiat faction, sparked a row on Friday by claiming that India is the “birthplace of Islam” and the country’s oldest religion. He had claimed he owned the country along with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and RSS boss Mohan Bhagwat.

Mahmood Madani had said it was wrong to claim that Islam came from outside, claiming that “Islam’s first prophet Adam descended here”.

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