MUMBAI: Bollywood singer Sonu Nigam shaved off his hair on Wednesday after a Bengal cleric’s “fatwa” offering Rs 10 lakh to anybody who shaved off the singers head.
The fatwa comes after Nigam’s Twitter outburst on “forced religiousness”, condemning the use of loudspeakers for morning prayers (azaan), created a stir on Monday.
The singer invited celebrity hairstylist Aalim Hakim to shave off his hair and also cleared his stand over the entire issue.
“It’s not an agitation, not a challenge that I am throwing someone’s way. I am shaving my head just to show that the person cutting my hair is a Muslim. It’s all about interpreting things the right way. I urge the media to present it like that and not in a confrontational way,” Nigam said.
Further explaining his tweets, he said “I raised a social issue and not a religious one when I tweeted about being woken up by the morning azaan,” and added that he apologises if someone thought otherwise.
“What is happening to the country? Anyone can lynch anyone or anyone can issue a fatwa. I’m not talking about any single religion, also wrote about temples and gurudwara which no one seemed to notice," he said.
He clarified that he is not against Islam or the Azaan, and had just wanted to speak against the loud speakers. “Being secular doesn’t mean we accept everything,” he added.
The singer ended the interaction while quoting senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel’s remarks, “Azaan zaruri hai, loudspeaker nahi” (Prayers are necessary and not loudspeakers).
The Kal ho na ho singer on Wednesday,took to twitter to reply to remarks he had received after his tweet series on Monday.
“Dear everyone, your stand exposes your own IQ. I stand by my statement that loudspeakers should not be allowed in Mosques & Temples. Period,” he tweeted.
Earlier, actor-producer Shamoon Abbasi had in a Facebook video message questioned Nigam’s stand.
“I’m amazed to see such a great, soulful singer, who is adored by everyone, giving such a statement,” Abbasi noted, and questioned what made him do it at this point in life when his career is dying down.
“Did you hear Azaan for the first time in India? Do you want Azaan to vanish from this world and everybody listen to your songs only?” he questioned.
Abbasi also asked Nigam to explain his stance that hurt the sentiments of Muslims all over the world.