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Islam in Bangladesh

Islam in Bangladesh

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Islam
Islam
Islam . The most common are and .   : Arabic pronunciation varies regionally. The first vowel ranges from ~~. The second vowel ranges from ~~~...

is the largest religion of Bangladesh
Bangladesh
Bangladesh , officially the People's Republic of Bangladesh is a sovereign state located in South Asia. It is bordered by India on all sides except for a small border with Burma to the far southeast and by the Bay of Bengal to the south...

, the Muslim
Muslim
A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

 population is approximately 148.6 million, which is the third largest Muslim population in the world, constituting 90.4% of the total population as of 2010. Religion has always been a strong part of identity, but this has varied at different times. A survey in late 2003 confirmed that religion is the first choice by a citizen for self-identification; atheism
Atheism
Atheism is, in a broad sense, the rejection of belief in the existence of deities. In a narrower sense, atheism is specifically the position that there are no deities...

 is extremely rare. Bangladesh is a secular state, however the United Nations
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

 has recognised the country as mainly moderate
Moderate
In politics and religion, a moderate is an individual who is not extreme, partisan or radical. In recent years, political moderates has gained traction as a buzzword....

 Muslim democratic country.

Islam arrived to the region of Bengal
Bengal
Bengal is a historical and geographical region in the northeast region of the Indian Subcontinent at the apex of the Bay of Bengal. Today, it is mainly divided between the sovereign land of People's Republic of Bangladesh and the Indian state of West Bengal, although some regions of the previous...

 since the 13th century, mainly by the arrivals of Arab traders, Persian Saints and conquests of the region. One of the notable Muslim saint was, Shah Jalal. He arrived in the region of Sylhet
Sylhet
Sylhet , is a major city in north-eastern Bangladesh. It is the main city of Sylhet Division and Sylhet District, and was granted metropolitan city status in March 2009. Sylhet is located on the banks of the Surma Valley and is surrounded by the Jaintia, Khasi and Tripura hills...

 in 1303 with many other disciples to preach the religion to the people.

History



During the opening years of the 13th century, the Muslim conquest
Conquest (military)
Conquest is the act of military subjugation of an enemy by force of arms. One example is the Norman conquest of England, which provided the subjugation of the Kingdom of England and the acquisition of the English crown by William the Conqueror in 1066...

 of Bengal took place, mainly as a sequel to Muhammad Ghori's expeditions late in 1192 spanning northern India. Syed Shanasiruddin was originally from Iraq but came to Bangladesh to spread the Islam. Early Arab Muslims
Arab Muslims
Arab Muslims are adherents of the religion of Islam who identify linguistically, culturally, or genealogically as Arabs. They greatly outnumber other ethnic groups in the Middle East. Muslims who are not Arabs are called mawali by Arab Muslims....

 however established commercial as well as religious contacts within the region before the conquest, mainly through the coastal regions as traders and primarily via the ports of Chittagong. Arab navigation in the region, was the result of the Muslim reign over the Indus delta. The activities of the Muslims were expanded along the entire coast of South Asia
South Asia
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia, is the southern region of the Asian continent, which comprises the sub-Himalayan countries and, for some authorities , also includes the adjoining countries to the west and the east...

 including the coasts of Bengal. The religion of Islam entered the region in many different ways, the Muslim traders, the Turkish conquest and, the missionary
Missionary
A missionary is a member of a religious group sent into an area to do evangelism or ministries of service, such as education, literacy, social justice, health care and economic development. The word "mission" originates from 1598 when the Jesuits sent members abroad, derived from the Latin...

 activities of the Muslim Sufis. One of the authentications of the Arab traders present in the region was, the writings of Arab geographers, found in the mouth if the Meghna River
Meghna River
The Meghna River is an important river in Bangladesh, one of the three that forms the Ganges Delta, the largest on earth fanning out to the Bay of Bengal. Being a part of the Surma-Meghna River System, Meghna is formed inside Bangladesh by the joining of different rivers originaing from the hilly...

 located near Sandwip
Sandwip
Sandwip is an island along the south eastern coast of Bangladesh.It is also spelled "Sandvip" both are mostly used.It is a sub-division of Chittagong District. It is situated at the estuary of the Meghna River on the Bay of Bengal and separated from the Chittagong coast by the Sandwip channel. It...

, on the Bay of Bengal
Bay of Bengal
The Bay of Bengal , the largest bay in the world, forms the northeastern part of the Indian Ocean. It resembles a triangle in shape, and is bordered mostly by the Eastern Coast of India, southern coast of Bangladesh and Sri Lanka to the west and Burma and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands to the...

. This evidence suggests that the Arab traders had arrived along the Bengal coast long before the Turkish conquest. The Arab writers also knew about the kingdoms of Samrup and Ruhmi, the latter being identified with the empire of Dharmapal of the Pala Empire.

Between the 8th century and 12th century, the Buddhist dynasty known as the Pala Empire
Pala Empire
The Pāla Empire was one of the major middle kingdoms of India existed from 750–1174 CE. It was ruled by a Buddhist dynasty from Bengal in the eastern region of the Indian subcontinent, all the rulers bearing names ending with the suffix Pala , which means protector. The Palas were often described...

 ruled Bengal. During that time, the majority of the population in Bengal were thought to be Buddhists. After the decline of the Pala dynasty, the Sena dynasty
Sena dynasty
The Sena Empire was a Hindu dynasty that ruled from Bengal through the 11th and 12th centuries. At its peak the empire covered much of the north-eastern region in the Indian Subcontinent. They were called Brahma-Kshatriyas, as evidenced through their surname, which is derived from the Sanskrit,...

 came to power. The large scale conversion to Islam of the population of what was to become Bangladesh
Bangladesh
Bangladesh , officially the People's Republic of Bangladesh is a sovereign state located in South Asia. It is bordered by India on all sides except for a small border with Burma to the far southeast and by the Bay of Bengal to the south...

 began in the thirteenth century and continued for hundreds of years. Conversion was generally collective rather than individual. Islam, attracted numerous Buddhists, and Hindus. Sufis were responsible for most conversions. During Ikhtiyar Uddin Bakhtiyar Khilji's control of the Bengal
Bengal
Bengal is a historical and geographical region in the northeast region of the Indian Subcontinent at the apex of the Bay of Bengal. Today, it is mainly divided between the sovereign land of People's Republic of Bangladesh and the Indian state of West Bengal, although some regions of the previous...

, Muslim missionaries
Spread of Islam
The Spread of Islam started shortly after the death of the Islamic prophet Muhammad in 632 AD. During his lifetime, the community of Muhammad, the ummah, was established in the Arabian Peninsula by means of conversion to Islam and conquering of territory, and oftentimes the conquered had to either...

 in India achieved their greatest success, in terms of number of converts to Islam.

Shah Jalal




Before the conquest by the Muslims, Sylhet
Sylhet
Sylhet , is a major city in north-eastern Bangladesh. It is the main city of Sylhet Division and Sylhet District, and was granted metropolitan city status in March 2009. Sylhet is located on the banks of the Surma Valley and is surrounded by the Jaintia, Khasi and Tripura hills...

 was ruled by local chieftains. In 1303 the saint, Hazrat Shah Jalal, came to Sylhet from Delhi
Delhi
Delhi , officially National Capital Territory of Delhi , is the largest metropolis by area and the second-largest by population in India, next to Mumbai. It is the eighth largest metropolis in the world by population with 16,753,265 inhabitants in the Territory at the 2011 Census...

 with a band of 360 disciples to preach Islam and defeated the Raja Gour Gobinda. As a result, Sylhet developed into a region that was home to numerous saints and Islamic shrines His uncle, Sheikh Kabir, one day gave Shah Jalal a handful of earth and asked him to travel to Hindustan
Hindustan
Hindustan or Indostan, literal translation "Land of River Sindhu ", is one of the popular names of South Asia. It can also mean "the land of the Hindus"...

 with the instruction that he should settle down at whichever place in Hindustan whose soil matched completely in smell and color, and devote his life for the propagation and establishment of Islam
Islam
Islam . The most common are and .   : Arabic pronunciation varies regionally. The first vowel ranges from ~~. The second vowel ranges from ~~~...

 there. Shah Jalal journeyed eastward and reached India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

 in 1300, where he met with many great scholars and mystics. He arrived at Ajmer
Ajmer
Ajmer , formerly written as Ajmere, is a city in Ajmer District in Rajasthan state in India. Ajmer has a population of around 800,000 , and is located west of the Rajasthan state capital Jaipur, 200 km from Jodhpur, 274 km from Udaipur, 439 km from Jaisalmer, and 391 km from...

, where he met the great Sufi mystic and scholar, Pir Khawaja Gharibnawaz Muinuddin Hasan Chisty, who is credited with much of the spread of Islam in India
Islam in India
Islam is the second-most practiced religion in the Republic of India after Hinduism, with more than 13.4% of the country's population ....

. In Delhi, he met with Nizamuddin Auliya
Nizamuddin Auliya
Sultan-ul-Mashaikh, Mehboob-e-Ilahi, Hazrat Shaikh Khwaja Syed Muhammad Nizamuddin Auliya , also known as Hazrat Nizamuddin, was a famous Sufi saint of the Chishti Order in the Indian Subcontinent, an order that believed in drawing close to God through renunciation of the world and service to...

, another major Sufi mystic and scholar.

During the later stages of his life, Shah Jalal devoted himself to propagating Islam to the masses. Under his guidance, many thousands of Hindus
Hinduism in Bangladesh
Hinduism is the second largest religious affiliation in Bangladesh, covering more than 9.2% of the population, according to the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics...

 and Buddhists
Buddhism in Bangladesh
Buddhism is the third largest religion in Bangladesh with about 0.7% of population adhering to Theravada Buddhism. Most of the practiconers are the tribal Jumma people who are found mainly in the Chittagong Hill Tracts, where they constitute about 45% of the area's population.- Demographic Overview...

 converted to Islam. Shah Jalal become so renowned that even the famed Ibn Battuta
Ibn Battuta
Abu Abdullah Muhammad Ibn Battuta , or simply Ibn Battuta, also known as Shams ad–Din , was a Muslim Moroccan Berber explorer, known for his extensive travels published in the Rihla...

, whilst in Chittagong
Chittagong
Chittagong ) is a city in southeastern Bangladesh and the capital of an eponymous district and division. Built on the banks of the Karnaphuli River, the city is home to Bangladesh's busiest seaport and has a population of over 4.5 million, making it the second largest city in the country.A trading...

, was asked to change his plans and go to Sylhet to visit him. On his way to Sylhet, Ibn Batuta was greeted by several of Shah Jalal's disciples who had come to assist him on his journey many days before he had arrived. Once in the presence of Shah Jalal, Ibn Batuta noted that Shah Jalal was tall and lean, fair in complexion and lived by the masjed in a cave, where his only item of value was a goat from which he extracted milk, butter, and yogurt. He observed that the companions of the sheikh were foreign and known for their strength and bravery. He also mentions that many people would visit the sheikh and seek guidance. Shah Jalal was therefore instrumental in the spread of Islam
Spread of Islam
The Spread of Islam started shortly after the death of the Islamic prophet Muhammad in 632 AD. During his lifetime, the community of Muhammad, the ummah, was established in the Arabian Peninsula by means of conversion to Islam and conquering of territory, and oftentimes the conquered had to either...

 throughout north east India including Assam
Assam
Assam , also, rarely, Assam Valley and formerly the Assam Province , is a northeastern state of India and is one of the most culturally and geographically distinct regions of the country...

.

Role of Sufism




The tradition of Islamic mysticism known as Sufism
Sufism
Sufism or ' is defined by its adherents as the inner, mystical dimension of Islam. A practitioner of this tradition is generally known as a '...

 appeared very early in Islam and became essentially a popular movement emphasizing worship out of a love of Allah rather than fear. Sufism stresses a direct, unstructured, personal devotion to God in place of the ritualistic, outward observance of the faith and "a Sufi aims to attain spiritual union with God through love" An important belief in the Sufi tradition is that the average believer may use spiritual guides in his pursuit of the truth. Throughout the centuries many gifted scholars and numerous poets have been inspired by Sufi ideas.

Sufi masters were the single most important factor in South Asian conversions to Islam, particularly in Bangladesh. Most Bangladeshi Muslims are influenced by Sufism. However, there are many movements who were against Sufism and are still active in Bangladesh today. These include the Deobandi
Deobandi
Deobandi is a movement of Sunni Islam. The movement began at Darul Uloom Deoband in Deoband, India, where its foundation was laid on 30 May 1866.-History:...

 and Wahabi movements.

The Qadiri, Maizbhandaria, Naqshbandi
Naqshbandi
Naqshbandi is one of the major Sufi spiritual orders of Sufi Islam. It is considered to be a "Potent" order.The Naqshbandi order is over 1,300 years old, and is active today...

, Chishti, Mujaddid
Mujaddid
A Mujaddid , according to the popular Muslim tradition, refers to a person who appears at the turn of every century of the Islamic calendar to revive Islam, remove from it any extraneous elements and restore it to its pristine purity...

, Ahmadi, Mohammadi, Sohradi and Refai orders were among the most widespread Sufi orders in Bangladesh in the late 1980s.
Although a formal organization of ordained priests has no basis in Islam, a variety of functionaries perform many of the duties conventionally associated with a clergy and serve, in effect, as priests. One group, known collectively as the Ulama
Ulama
-In Islam:* Ulema, also transliterated "ulama", a community of legal scholars of Islam and its laws . See:**Nahdlatul Ulama **Darul-uloom Nadwatul Ulama **Jamiatul Ulama Transvaal**Jamiat ul-Ulama -Other:...

, has traditionally provided the orthodox leadership of the community. The Ulama unofficially interpret and administer religious law. Their authority rests on their knowledge of Sharia
Sharia
Sharia law, is the moral code and religious law of Islam. Sharia is derived from two primary sources of Islamic law: the precepts set forth in the Quran, and the example set by the Islamic prophet Muhammad in the Sunnah. Fiqh jurisprudence interprets and extends the application of sharia to...

.

The members of the Ulama include Maulvis, Imams, and Mullahs. The first two titles are accorded to those who have received special training in Islamic theology and law. A maulvi has pursued higher studies in a madrassa, a school of religious education attached to a mosque
Mosque
A mosque is a place of worship for followers of Islam. The word is likely to have entered the English language through French , from Portuguese , from Spanish , and from Berber , ultimately originating in — . The Arabic word masjid literally means a place of prostration...

. Additional study on the graduate level leads to the title maulana
Maulana
Mawlānā is an Arabic word literally meaning "our lord" or "our master" ....

. The madrassas are also ideologically divided in two mainstreams.The Ali'a Madrassa which has its roots in Aligarh Movement
Aligarh Movement
Aligarh Movement was the movement led by Sir Syed Ahmed Khan, to educate the Muslims of the South Asia after the defeat of the rebels in the Indian rebellion of 1857. It had enormous success and had a profound impact on the future of the subcontinent...

 of Sir Syed Ahmed Khan Bahadur
Syed Ahmed Khan
Javad-ud Daula, Arif Jang, Sir Syed Ahmed Khan, KCSI , commonly known as Sir Syed, was an Indian educator and politician, and an Islamic reformer and modernist...

 and the other one is Quomi Madarassa which is very close to Deobandi
Deobandi
Deobandi is a movement of Sunni Islam. The movement began at Darul Uloom Deoband in Deoband, India, where its foundation was laid on 30 May 1866.-History:...

 schools in India and Pakistan founded by Haji Muhammad Abid Husain of Deoband
Deoband
Deoband is a city and a municipal board in Saharanpur district in the state of Uttar Pradesh, India. It is located in the upper Doab region of Uttar Pradesh. Deoband used to be surrounded by dense forests, and was believed to be the abode of the Goddess Durga, according to one tradition this is...

, India of the Deobandi Movement
Darul Uloom Deoband
The Darul Uloom Deoband is an Islamic school in India where the Deobandi Islamic movement was started. It is located at Deoband, a town in Saharanpur district of Uttar Pradesh, India. It was founded in 1866 by several prominent Islamic scholars , headed by Maulana Muhammad Qasim Nanotvi...

. This means the Ulamas are also not in full agreement about their interpretation of Islam, of its theology and law.

In Bangladesh, where a modified Anglo-Indian civil and criminal legal system operates, there are no official sharia courts. Most Muslim marriages, however, are presided over by the qazi, a traditional Muslim judge whose advice is also sought on matters of personal law, such as inheritance, divorce, and the administration of religious endowments
Waqf
A waqf also spelled wakf formally known as wakf-alal-aulad is an inalienable religious endowment in Islamic law, typically denoting a building or plot of land for Muslim religious or charitable purposes. The donated assets are held by a charitable trust...

.

In the late 1980s, the ulama of Bangladesh still perceived their function as that of teaching and preserving the Islamic way of life in the face of outside challenges, especially from modern sociopolitical ideas based on Christianity
Christianity
Christianity is a monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus as presented in canonical gospels and other New Testament writings...

 or communism
Communism
Communism is a social, political and economic ideology that aims at the establishment of a classless, moneyless, revolutionary and stateless socialist society structured upon common ownership of the means of production...

. Any effort at modernization was perceived as a threat to core religious values and institutions; therefore, the ulama as a class was opposed to any compromise in matters of sharia. Many members of the ulama favored the establishment of an Islamic theocracy in Bangladesh and were deeply involved in political activism through several political parties.

Traditions and sects



The majority of Muslims in Bangladesh are Sunni, who mainly follow the Hanafi
Hanafi
The Hanafi school is one of the four Madhhab in jurisprudence within Sunni Islam. The Hanafi madhhab is named after the Persian scholar Abu Hanifa an-Nu‘man ibn Thābit , a Tabi‘i whose legal views were preserved primarily by his two most important disciples, Abu Yusuf and Muhammad al-Shaybani...

 school of thought (madh'hab). The main groups include the Deobandi
Deobandi
Deobandi is a movement of Sunni Islam. The movement began at Darul Uloom Deoband in Deoband, India, where its foundation was laid on 30 May 1866.-History:...

 movement which many are part of the Tablighi Jamaat
Tablighi Jamaat
Tablighi Jamaat is a religious movement which was founded in 1926 by Muhammad Ilyas al-Kandhlawi in India. The movement primarily aims at Tablighi spiritual reformation by working at the grass roots level, reaching out to Muslims across all social and economic spectra to bring them closer to...

. The Bishwa Ijtema
Bishwa Ijtema
The Bishwa Ijtema , or is an annual Tablighi Jamaat Islamic movement congregation held at Tongi, Bangladesh by the river Turag. The event focuses on prayers and meditation and does not allow political discussion...

 (World Congregation) is an event held annually by Tablighi Jamaat which focuses on prayers and meditation, attracting 5 million people from across Bangladesh and South Asia. There are large followers of Sufi-influenced groups such as the Barelvi
Barelvi
Barelvi is a term used for the movement of Sufi , Sunni Islam originating in the Indian subcontinent.The Movement is known as Ahle Sunnat movement to its followers....

 movement. A group which has a large following is the Fultali, based on the teachings of late Saheb Qibla Fultali
Saheb Qibla Fultali
Abdul Latif Chowdhury , widely known as Saheb Qiblah Fultali, was an Islamic scholar of theology, philosopher, qira'at/tajweed teacher, murshid/pir, spiritual esotericist, philanthropist, and spiritual leader.-Background:...

. The Jamaat-e-Islami
Jamaat-e-Islami
This article is about Jamaat-e-Islami Pakistan. For other organizations of similar name see Jamaat-e-Islami The Jamaat-e-Islami , is a Pro-Muslim political party in Pakistan...

 is a political religious party, which is one of the largest Islamic party in Bangladesh.

The Ahle Hadith (or the Salafi
Salafi
A Salafi come from Sunni Islam is a follower of an Islamic movement, Salafiyyah, that is supposed to take the Salaf who lived during the patristic period of early Islam as model examples...

) is a movement which follows a strict interpretation of the Qur'an and Sunnah, without following a madh'hab. There are about 27.5 million followers, mainly in areas of Rajshahi and Khulna. There are three main groups of Ahle Hadith, the majority are part of the Ahle Hadith Andolon Bangladesh (AHAB), led by Muhammad Asadullah Al-Ghalib
Muhammad Asadullah Al-Ghalib
Dr. Muhammad Asadullah Al-Ghalib is a Bangladeshi professor of Arabic at the University of Rajshahi and leader of the Islamic organization Ahle Hadith Andolon Bangladesh .On February 23, 2005, he was arrested on charges following allegations he was leading Islamic militants...

. The other groups are the Jamiyate Ahle Hadith, and the Ahle Hadith Tablig-e-Islam. There are 600 Ahle Hadith mosques, and 5 madrassas in the country.

There are also few people who are Ahmadiyya
Ahmadiyya
Ahmadiyya is an Islamic religious revivalist movement founded in India near the end of the 19th century, originating with the life and teachings of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad , who claimed to have fulfilled the prophecies about the world reformer of the end times, who was to herald the Eschaton as...

 and Shi'a
Shi'a Islam
Shia Islam is the second largest denomination of Islam. The followers of Shia Islam are called Shi'ites or Shias. "Shia" is the short form of the historic phrase Shīʻatu ʻAlī , meaning "followers of Ali", "faction of Ali", or "party of Ali".Like other schools of thought in Islam, Shia Islam is...

 Muslims. The Shi'a observance commemorating the martyrdom of Ali
Ali
' |Ramaḍān]], 40 AH; approximately October 23, 598 or 600 or March 17, 599 – January 27, 661).His father's name was Abu Talib. Ali was also the cousin and son-in-law of the Islamic prophet Muhammad, and ruled over the Islamic Caliphate from 656 to 661, and was the first male convert to Islam...

's sons, Hasan
Hasan ibn Ali
Al-Hasan ibn ‘Alī ibn Abī Tālib ‎ is an important figure in Islam, the son of Fatimah the daughter of the Islamic prophet Muhammad, and of the fourth Caliph Ali ibn Abi Talib. Hasan is a member of the Ahl al-Bayt and Ahl al-Kisa...

 and Husayn
Husayn ibn Ali
Hussein ibn ‘Alī ibn Abī Ṭālib ‎ was the son of ‘Alī ibn Abī Ṭālib and Fātimah Zahrā...

, are still widely observed by the nation's Sunnis, even though there are small numbers of Shi'as. The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community
Ahmadiyya Muslim Community
The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community is the larger of two communities that arose from the Ahmadiyya movement founded in 1889 in India by Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian . The original movement split into two factions soon after the death of the founder...

, which is claimed to be non-Muslim by mainstream Muslim leaders, is estimated to be around 100,000, the community has faced discrimination because of their belief and have been persecuted in some areas.

Muslim Population by District

Muslim Population across Bangladesh
District Percentage (%)
Barisal 89%
Chittagong 90%
Dhaka 90%
Khulna 82.87%
Rajshahi 89.84%
Sylhet 97%


Source: Amardesh

Status of Religious Freedom


The Constitution
Constitution
A constitution is a set of fundamental principles or established precedents according to which a state or other organization is governed. These rules together make up, i.e. constitute, what the entity is...

 establishes Islam as the state religion but provides for the right to practice—subject to law, public order, and morality—the religion of one's choice. The Government generally respects this provision in practice; however, some members of the Hindu, Christian, Buddhist, and Ahmadiya communities experience discrimination. The Government (2001–2006) led by an alliance of four parties Bangladesh Nationalist Party
Bangladesh Nationalist Party
The Bangladesh Nationalist Party , commonly referred to as the BNP, is the mainstream center-right political party in Bangladesh. BNP ruled Bangladesh total 18 years since her independence, the longest than any other party in Bangladesh...

, Jamaat-e-Islami Bangladesh, Islami Oikya Jote and Bangladesh Jatiyo Party banned the Ahmadiya literatures by an executive order.

Family laws concerning marriage, divorce, and adoption differ depending on the religion of the person involved. There is also, Anglo-Indian Civil Law in some of these regards in parallel. There are no legal restrictions on marriage between members of different faiths but to get marriage registered under Muslim religious laws, the bride and the bride-groom must be Muslims by birth or by conversion.

Under the Muslim Family Ordinance, female heirs inherit usually half of that inherited by male relatives, and wives have equal divorce rights. Men are not permitted to have more then one wife, and society strongly discourages polygamy
Polygamy
Polygamy is a marriage which includes more than two partners...

. Laws provide protection for women against arbitrary divorce and the taking of additional wives by husbands without the first wife's consent, but the protections generally apply only to registered marriages. Marriage is governed by family law of the respective religions. Under the law, a Muslim husband is required to pay his former wife a lump sum alimony fixed at the time of registration of marriage and further variable amount of alimony for 3 months for maintenance.

There are approximately 100,000 Ahmadis concentrated in Dhaka
Dhaka
Dhaka is the capital of Bangladesh and the principal city of Dhaka Division. Dhaka is a megacity and one of the major cities of South Asia. Located on the banks of the Buriganga River, Dhaka, along with its metropolitan area, had a population of over 15 million in 2010, making it the largest city...

 and several other locales. While mainstream Muslims rejected some of the Ahmadiyya teachings, the majority didnot supported Ahmadis right to practice without fear or persecution. However, Ahmadis are continued to be subjected to harassment and violence from those who denounced their teachings.

Politicized Islam



Post-1971 regimes sought to increase the role of the government in the religious life of the people. The Ministry of Religious Affairs provided support, financial assistance, and endowments to religious institutions, including mosques and community prayer grounds (idgahs). The organization of annual pilgrimages to Mecca also came under the auspices of the ministry because of limits on the number of pilgrims admitted by the government of Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia , commonly known in British English as Saudi Arabia and in Arabic as as-Sa‘ūdiyyah , is the largest state in Western Asia by land area, constituting the bulk of the Arabian Peninsula, and the second-largest in the Arab World...

 and the restrictive foreign exchange regulations of the government of Bangladesh. The ministry also directed the policy and the program of the Islamic Foundation Bangladesh, which was responsible for organizing and supporting research and publications on Islamic subjects. The foundation also maintained the Baitul Mukarram
Baitul Mukarram
Baitul Mukarram is the national mosque of Bangladesh. Located at the heart of Dhaka, capital of Bangladesh, the mosque was completed in 1968. The mosque has a capacity of 30,000, giving it the respectable position of being the 10th biggest mosque in the world. However the mosque is constantly...

 (National Mosque), and organized the training of imams. Some 18,000 imams were scheduled for training once the government completed establishment of a national network of Islamic cultural centers and mosque libraries. Under the patronage of the Islamic Foundation, an encyclopedia of Islam in the Bangla language was being compiled in the late 1980s.

Another step toward further government involvement in religious life was taken in 1984 when the semiofficial Zakat
Zakat
Zakāt , one of the Five Pillars of Islam, is the giving of a fixed portion of one's wealth to charity, generally to the poor and needy.-History:Zakat, a practice initiated by Muhammed himself, has played an important role throughout Islamic history...

 Fund Committee was established under the chairmanship of the president of Bangladesh. The committee solicited annual zakat contributions on a voluntary basis. The revenue so generated was to be spent on orphanages, schools, children's hospitals, and other charitable institutions and projects. Commercial banks and other financial institutions were encouraged to contribute to the fund. Through these measures the government sought closer ties with religious establishments within the country and with Islamic countries such as Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia , commonly known in British English as Saudi Arabia and in Arabic as as-Sa‘ūdiyyah , is the largest state in Western Asia by land area, constituting the bulk of the Arabian Peninsula, and the second-largest in the Arab World...

 and Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

.

Islam being the central component of national identity plays a significant role in the politics, life and culture of the people. Secular parties such as Awami League also mention "Allah is Great" as a slogan in their banners. When in June 1988 an "Islamic way of life" was proclaimed for Bangladesh by constitutional amendment, very little attention was paid outside the intellectual class to the meaning and impact of such an important national commitment. Most observers believed that the declaration of Islam as the state religion might have a significant impact on national life, however. Aside from arousing the suspicion of the non-Islamic minorities, it could accelerate the proliferation of religious parties at both the national and the local levels, thereby exacerbating tension and conflict between secular and religious politicians. Unrest of this nature was reported on some college campuses soon after the amendment was promulgated.

Jamaat-e-Islami Bangladesh (a.k.a 'Jamaat') is the largest Islamist political party in Bangladesh. This is one of the leading political party in Bangladesh and largest islamic party in subcontinent. The party joined the Bangladesh Nationalist Party to lead government and hold two key Ministries with Khaleda Zia's government. This party played a questionable role in Liberation War of Bangladesh. It is alleged that the current leader of the party, Motiur Rahman Nizami (as well as previous leaders, and other party members) participated in alongside the Pakistani army in perpetrating the 1971 Bangladesh atrocities
1971 Bangladesh atrocities
Beginning with the start of Operation Searchlight on 25 March 1971 and continuing throughout the Bangladesh Liberation War, there were widespread violations of human rights in East Pakistan perpetrated by the Pakistan Army, with support from local political and religious militias, especially...

 as Razakars
Razakars (Pakistan)
The Razakar was the paramilitary force organized by the Pakistan Army during the Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971.The Urdu word razakar literally means "volunteer". The Razakar force was composed of mostly pro-Pakistani Bengalis and Urdu-speaking migrants living in erstwhile East Pakistan...

 and members of the Al-Badr
Al-Badr (East Pakistan)
The Al-Badr was the paramilitary wing of the Jamaat-e-Islami in Bangladesh that collaborated with the Pakistan Army against the Bengali nationalist movement in the Bangladesh Liberation War. The present chief of the Jamaat, Maulana Motiur Rahman Nizami headed the Al-Badr organisation as the...

 militias.

See also


  • Islam by country
    Islam by country
    Islam is the world's second largest religion after Christianity. According to a 2009 demographic study, Islam has 1.57 billion adherents, making up 23% of the world population....

  • Shah Jalal
  • Muslim Population by District in West Bengal
    Muslim Population by District in West Bengal
    Here is a breakdown of the Muslim population by district in the Indian state of West Bengal according to 2001 Census of India:*...

  • Fultali
  • Barelvi
    Barelvi
    Barelvi is a term used for the movement of Sufi , Sunni Islam originating in the Indian subcontinent.The Movement is known as Ahle Sunnat movement to its followers....

  • Deobandi
    Deobandi
    Deobandi is a movement of Sunni Islam. The movement began at Darul Uloom Deoband in Deoband, India, where its foundation was laid on 30 May 1866.-History:...

  • Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami
    Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami
    Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami , previously known as Jamaat-e-Islami Bangladesh , is a far-right Islamist political party in Bangladesh....



External links