The National Commission for Minorities (NCM) has sought an unconditional apology from the former Uttar Pradesh Shia Central Waqf Board chairman Waseem Rizvi for his derogatory comments against the Quran. Rizvi, had recently moved the Supreme Court with a plea seeking the “removal” of certain verses from the Quran that according to him “promoted violence.” The Commission has issued a notice to Rizvi telling him to withdraw his comments and tender an “unconditional apology” within 21 days. The NCM stated: “The comments given in the media by you about deletion of certain verses from the Quran are “highly provocative, objectionable and malicious, prejudicial to maintenance of peace and harmony, with intent to outrage the religious feelings of a particular community and to insult the particular religion.” The NCM has observed that Rizvi’s remarks appear to be a well-thought conspiracy to disturb the communal harmony of the country, stated news reports.
If Rizvi fails to comply, the NCM has stated that it will hold a hearing and direct the authorities to take legal action against him: “The NCM directs you to withdraw your comments and tender an unconditional apology within 21 days, failing which the Commission will be constrained to hold a hearing under Section 9 of the National Commission for Minorities Act, 1992 and direct appropriate authorities to take legal action as deemed fit.” The Commission took cognisance of the matter following the complaints received from four persons- Abdul Majid Nizami, Ali Raza Zaidi, Mohd Faizan Chaudhary and Maulana Syed Nazar Abbas.
On March 11, Waseem Rizvi, the former Chairman of the Shia Waqf Board, filed a petition in the Supreme Court seeking that “26 verses of the Quran be removed”. According to news reports, Rizvi in his petition, has stated that the Quran, the holy book of Muslims, has “some verses that are used to promote terrorism, violence, jihad”. In an interview with Aaj Tak, Rizvi claimed that these verses were added to the Quran later. Rizvi, who is known to be close to the right wing politicians, told the news channel that these “verses were added to the Quran, by the first three Caliphs, to aid the expansion of Islam by war.”
His family has disowned him years ago for his conduct, said his younger brother Zaheer Rizvi, “He (Waseem Rizvi) has gone mad. Neither I, nor my sister or my mother have anything to do with him anymore”.
Following the writ to change the Quran, Waseem Rizvi’s brother has announced that his family was already estranged from Rizvi and they have now announced they have nothing to do with him! https://t.co/pyaZZwqgc0 pic.twitter.com/Ulthl3J5Oz
— Ali Khan Mahmudabad (@Mahmudabad) March 14, 2021
According to Siasat daily an FIR under IPC sections 295A (Deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs) and 153A (Promoting the enmity between different groups on the ground of religion) has been registered against Waseem Rizvi in Charminar police station and an investigation is underway. However, Rizvi remains unrepentant, stated the news report citing a video statement he purportedly released on some social media platforms. He us reported to have said that he would “not go back on his plea with the Supreme Court on deleting 26 verses of the Holy Quran” adding “I have four friends who may not agree with on my stand the 26 verses of the Quran, but would come forward to lay me down in the grave,” to suggest he did not care if his own family had disowned him. According to the Siasat Daily news report, Rizvi said that he would “prefer to kill himself but not budge from his position on the verses.”