Srinagar, Mar 29: Tabligi group, a Kashmiri voluntary preaching group known locally and outside as ‘Allah Wallay’, has been in the news for all the wrong reasons after one of its prominent members died of coronavirus infection in Srinagar last week.
So, who exactly comprise the Tabligi group? What do they all stand for and propound?
A fact sheet about the Allah Wallay group makes it clear that it is a Sunni Muslim group which has nothing to do with the Shia preachers and religious heads of Iran.
No member of this group from Kashmir ever visits Iran for pilgrimage as do the local Shia Muslims.
The Allah Wallay or the Tabligi group adhere to the ‘Hanafi’ school of thought against the ‘Shaafi’ school of thought to which the Wahabi sect of Muslims belong.
As against the Wahabis who have a strait-laced beliefs about Islam, the Tabligis believe in the Sufi philosophy of moderate Muslims and visit shrines and Dargahs of sufi saints as against the Wahabi belief that the dead are dead and buried who can do no good or bad to the living.
There has not been a single member of the Tabligi group in Kashmir that joined the militant ranks during the last 32 years of insurgent violence here.
Allah Wallay are believed to be so busy spreading Allah’s word of tolerance and co-existence that they have no time for violence.
Compared with this, there have been many followers of the Wahabi school who have joined radical Muslim groups in different parts of the world.
In a nutshell, the Tabligi group is a group of Muslims who have kept themselves engaged in prayer.
They have always been provided free accommodation and welcomed with open hands across the Valley to come and spend days and nights in prayer and penance in the city, town and village mosques.
The fact that fiction is being woven around the death of one of the Tabligi group’s prominent members is unfortunate and stands to prove that rumour and falsehood have wings in Kashmir while the truth crawls slowly and steadily.
Meanwhile, the death of a Tabligi group members was followed a controversy in Kashmir as to whether the deceased had knowingly hidden his travel history and avoided treatment till he became a full-blown COVID-19 case or had his treatment been messed up by the doctors.
There were reports that this person had held congregations in Sopore, Bandipora, Samba, Jammu during which he is reported to have met dozens of people in various places, including Srinagar.
All family members of this COVID-19 victim have tested negative, but some of his contacts have tested positive and are being treated in Srinagar hospitals.
An official probe ordered into whether the SOP was followed by doctors in this case or not is yet to report its findings.
Despite all the controversy surrounding the victim’s travel history and the line of treatment, the fact remains that all those who knew him believe firmly that he was a very noble human being.
“Out to help the needy. Always ready to spend time and money in Allah’s way. He was one of the noblest persons I have ever known,” said a friend of the deceased who wished not be named to protect the victim’s identity.
In the wake of widespread rumours that the victim had visited Malaysia and Indonesia recently, the family challenged anybody to prove the allegations.
“Though we cannot deny that he could have met foreigners in Delhi and elsewhere during his visits there,” said another friend of the victim’s family.