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Shab-e-Baraat and MP Virendra Sharma

Fri 12 May 2017
The Jamia Masjid on Townsend road in Southall is one mosque that celebrates Shab-e-Baraat and always finds it difficult to accommodate the people that turn up for the Salat-e-Tasbee.

Why do people ask for the time of salat-e-Tasbee and not the Isha prayers? It sounds like a foolish question at first but not when you look at the subject closely – using the relevant information. The salat-e-Tasbee can be delayed for an hour or more. People just want straight answers as some of them have to earn a living. They have to know if it would be practical to go the mosque or do it at home. Imagine being told at midnight that no salat-e-Tasbee will be performed at the mosque. Ridiculous.

It is a Night of Forgiveness for everyone except for certain category of people. Even they will be forgiven if the ask for forgiveness from the heart and promise not to repeat their mistakes. OK.

Some people have been vocal enough to request that Salat-e-Tasbee be performed without too much delay after the Isha prayers due to people have to go to work the following days. What is the management view - Who cares what these people want, we will stick to our OLD formula and drag it out as much as possible.

OK, but will the mosque management be forgiven if they are NOT willing to listen to a reasonable request and don’t care about pissing off people for no reason in a mosque on night of Shab-e-Baraat?

Who was it that said – if your actions are disturbing one person – don’t do it. He was speaking about mosques broadcasting events on loudspeakers for the benefit of the neighbourhood. No one at the mosques seems to be paying any attention to these words of wisdom.

There are a lot of beggars in Southall – possibly due to the generosity of the Muslims. Some professional have been begging on the streets not for years but for decades. The money you give does NOT usually go towards food. It goes towards drugs, drink and gambling. For some people it just a BAD habit. Even if they became millionaire they would NOT stop. What has this got to do with this story?

If a mosque is in need of money then no one would complain if they asked for donations. But if the mosque has plenty of money, should it very actively ask for donations – as if to put food on the table.

Should Shab-e-Baraat be a money making night for the mosque or a night of supplication? Donations tonight will count for a lot more, so I will put the bucket at the front of the congregation. The mosque is packed full, so do you really want people moving about and possibly losing their place in the process. Little response or second strategy is to take the bucket to everyone in the mosque. Why bother when there are people standing with a bucket outside the mosque.

Why are people looking tired, puzzled or muted? Possible because they are saying “just get on with it and STOP wasting time”.

Management takes it time to talk about all the other things happening at the mosque before Salat-e-Tasbee. OK.

It is a supposed to be night of supplication, so why bring up politics? The Chairman of the mosque Khawaja Asif is excited to inform the people that the Virendra Sharma apology happened at THIS mosque. A very STUPID subject to raise according to many people. It was nothing to be proud of. The actual meeting and process was a disaster. What happened immediately afterwards led by the reporters was totally disgraceful.

What was being planned by the reporters after was even more despicable. Instead of apologising for their totally disgusting behaviour, they sought to discredit the person they verbally and almost physically abused in the eyes of their other media friends. This was not possible because their actions were clear for all to see in a recorded video.

You can read the details of that at

Some of the people at the mosque were rightly angry at the whole process. Why were the community not invited? Khawaja Asif response was – “Did you come?” as you are complaining. Khawaja Asif forgot the fact that he did NOT invite the general public. There was no intention to do so. If they did so then people would have asked GENUINE questions and the process would NOT have been brushed under the carpet.

Khawaja Asif was one of the organisers. Did any one of them plan for the event? What did they want Sharma to say? Just read this 7 second statement like “I withdraw my comments of 19 January in the House of Common. I apologise” is all that was needed. Did anyone bother to get that ready? No. That is typical of the Muslim or Pakistani leadership. It was sheep leading the sheep. But the sheep no longer want to be led by sheep.

The whole Pakistani and Muslim community of Southall was united and ready. The Sikh community of Southall was also ready. Others were ready to support us. What did our leaders do? Sweep the matter under the carpet in a hurried meeting.

They offered unconditional FULL support to the Labour party in return for the dodgy apology. Did you hear any Labour MP speak out against Virendra Sharma? No. Ealing Southall has 15 Labour councillors. Did you hear any one of them speak out against Virendra Sharma? No.

Virendra Sharma or the Labour Party worthy of our unconditional FULL support? Only if you are a bleeding politician and want to do deals for your OWN benefit.

Virendra Sharma only grudgingly apologised for political purposes –to stop the Pakistani, Muslim and Sikh community of Southall standing up to him. Our leaders have let them community DOWN and divided their own community and sent it back to the wilderness. A shameful act.

Khawaja Asif wanted to thank Geo TV and Channel 44 for broadcasting the Virendra Sharma apology around the world. A very STUPID statement to make given the facts. Khawaja Asif is aware of the utterly disgusting behaviour of their employees at the actual events. He acknowledges that facts.

If he had banned these two channels (permanently or for 6 months) no one at the mosque knowing the facts could have objected. Thanking them is OBSCENE. The least I expected from any decent person is to state “Please behave respectfully in the mosque at all time, especially the media.”

Can we NOT function without Geo TV and Channel 44?
What was he thinking?
When will we learn?
Only when we speak OUT against these major FAILURES of our leadership.

Luckily, a nasty heated debate was narrowly avoided at the mosque that should never have been started in the first place. Unfortunately it is already on Youtube for everyone to see.

The Dawat-e-Islami group hold a session every Thursday at 8pm at the Masjid. Their speaker said that they have badge pinned on their chest. The text on it says something like “Only speak if you have something good or useful to say. Otherwise remain silent.” Excellent advice.

It was supposed to be a night of supplications. I can honestly say it was my worst Salat-e-Tasbee due to the above facts spinning round in my head.

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