“Allah did not create man so that he could have fun. The aim of creation was for mankind to be put to the test through hardship and prayer. An Islamic regime must be serious in every field. There are no jokes in Islam. There is no humor in Islam. There is no fun in Islam. There can be no fun and joy in whatever is serious.” — Ayatollah Khomeini
MALDA: Organizers had to cancel a women’s football match and national-level players who had come from various places across the country had to return as fundamentalists allegedly issued a fatwa to stop a women’s football match at Harishchandrapur here on Saturday.
The block administration, which had earlier given permission for the football match, is now giving the excuse of law and order issues to cancel the event.
Progressive Youth Club of Chandipur village in Harishchandrapur police station area had organized the football match as a part of their golden jubilee celebrations. Club president Reja Razi said, “The women’s football match was to be played between Kolkata-XI and North Bengal-XI. National-level players such as Krishna Das, Sujata Kar, Arjuna-awardee Santi Mallik, Fifa referee Anamika Sen, captain of national handball team Anita Roy and many others were supposed to be present on the occasion. There was great enthusiasm about the event among local people.”
“But last week, some moulavis (Muslim clerics) raised their objection to the women’s football match. We had approached the block administration and the sub-divisional officer for help. On March 11, a meeting was also held in the presence of BDO between us and the fundamentalists who were against the match. The next day, many more clerics said a women’s match would be against Islam. They also threatened to make a stronger agitation if the match was held. The BDO then ordered to stop the match.”
BDO Biplab Roy conceded, “We had to cancel the football match because of a possible deterioration in law and order situation.”
Locals were upset with the cancellation of the event. Villager Pijuskanti Das said, “Are we going backward? When the govt is inspiring women to come forward, such a dictum is disappointing.”
Local Imam Maqsud Alam, however, claimed that they did not issue any fatwa against the match. “When some people sought my opinion, I just said Islam does not permit us to watch women playing in the field wearing short dresses.”