In many of the Islamic countries, religion has a great hold on the minds of people. In such countries laws and decisions are made keeping in view the Islamic codes that have remained solid for last fourteen centuries. In Afghanistan the same condition prevails, as 99.9 percent of its population stands to be Muslims. In Islamic societies such as Afghanistan, the role of clerics is quite vital. People seek guidance from them in all walks of life.
All Afghanistan Cleric Council (AACC) is the highest body in regards of decision making on important religious matters in Afghanistan.
The Council has hundreds of members who are almost equally good in their concerned area.
Today, as the time need of Afghanistan is a better security, the role of the cleric council of Afghanistan is deemed quite decisive in bringing peace to Afghanistan.
Whether the clerics have played a significant role in helping Afghanistan move towards peace and stability is not the focus of this writing.
But the cleric council of Afghanistan has not yet issued any 'Fitwa' or religious decree declaring the suicide bombing as Haram (forbidden in Islam) – as has been done by its counter-part in our neighboring Pakistan.
This has been a long-time demand of the people of Afghanistan based on the fact that Islam has declared committing suicide as Haram fourteen centuries ago.
People also believe that such Fitwa could discourage the people becoming suicide bombers.
Leaving such an important Fitwa aside, the Cleric Council of Afghanistan was quick enough to declare hunger strike forbidden or Haram after hearing the news on the hunger strike of Simin Barakzai, an unseated MP from Hirat province who, yesterday, completed her eleven days of remaining in hunger and thirst.
Indeed hunger strike is quite common in other Islamic countries and has been practiced since long.
Since religious has a great hold on the minds of the people of Afghanistan, it is feared that the opinion of clerics about hunger strike of Barakzai would change the public attitude towards her and negate the history she is making in Afghanistan by her democratic protest.
Her protest is making the foundation for demanding rights through civil society and democratic values. Therefore, her sacrifice should not go futile. Not everyone can dare going on such a strike.