The senior leader of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party once again has something to say about the religious practices of the Islamic religion.
Recently, Senior BJP leader and former minister KS Eshwarappa issued a controversial statement regarding Azaan – the call to prayer for Muslims – while addressing a public gathering.
This started when Eshwarappa’s speech was suddenly interrupted when the sound of Azaan was heard from a mosque located not far from the spot of the speech.
The 74-year-old politician, who seems bothered by the sound of the Azaan, admits that the call to prayer he hears wherever he goes gives him a “headache.” He also said that the Supreme Court’s decision is due; according to him, if not that day, the call for Azaan will end soon.
Furthermore, the senior BJP leader also said that the followers of the same religion as him, including girls and women, offered prayers and bhajans in temples without using loudspeakers and questioned whether Allah hears prayers only if loudspeakers are used during Azaan.
Then he controversially said that if the call to prayer had to be echoed with a loudspeaker, it meant that “Allah is Deaf.”
KS Eshwarappa, who has also served as Deputy Chief Minister, is a politician who is no stranger to controversial. Last year, the senior BJP politician was forced to resign after massive controversy following the suicide of a contractor, who accused him of being fully responsible for his death in his last message.
Then, he sparked a row after calling 18th-century Mysore ruler Tipu Sultan a “Muslim gunda.”
The fierce debate about Azaan has existed for a long time, where the use of loudspeakers to echo Azaan is often said to disturb followers of other religions.
In July 2005, a Supreme Court Order prohibited loudspeakers in public places between 10 pm and 6 am, except in cases of public emergency, citing the severe health effects of noise pollution on residents.
Last year, the Karnataka High Court dismissed a public interest litigation claim to issue any direction to mosques regarding Azaan. The court decided that tolerance is a characteristic of the Constitution. The court said that the opinion that Azaan violates the fundamental rights of adherents of other religions is unacceptable.