What is Dawat-e-Islami?
- Dawat-e-Islami offers online courses in Islamic studies and runs a television station
- It is associated with global Preaching of Peace which counters terrorism
- One of the two men who carried out the Udaipur attack was allegedly inspired by the group
The group came under the spotlight over the brutal killing of a tailor in Rajasthan's Udaipur. One of the two men who carried out the deadly attack was allegedly inspired by the Dawat-e-Islami and had visited Karachi in 2014.
However, the organisation denied links to "any acts of terrorism," saying it is purely an educational, missionary and charity institution which preaches peace.
Dawat-e-Islami offers online courses in Islamic studies and runs a television station, Madani Channel. It is associated with global Preaching of Peace which counters terrorism.
Two men, identified as Riaz Akhtari and Ghouse Mohammad, allegedly hacked tailor Kanhaiya Lal to death with a cleaver at his shop Tuesday. They posted videos online of the beheading saying they are avenging an insult to Islam.
"Dawat-e-Islami has nothing to do with any act of terrorism. We are purely an educational, missionary and charity institution and globally preach peace in our lives," Maulana Mahmood Qadri, a senior figure in the organisation's headquarters (Faizan-e-Madina) in Karachi's Gulshan-e-Iqbal area told PTI in an interview.
He said that thousands of students from all over the world visit the organisation's headquarters for Islamic studies. Their organization does not preach or promote extremism or radicalism, he added.
"We are also apolitical," he emphasised.
"Since the Dawat-e-Islami was founded in 1981, there has not been a single incident where any of our students, followers or teachers has been named or been involved in any violent activities," he said, expressed surprise at the Indian media reports linking the organisation with the Udaipur murder.
"Any Muslim, no matter which sect he belongs to, would never tolerate any blasphemous comments about the Prophet Mohammad. What happened was bad and it caused hurt, pain to every Muslim where-ever he lives," he said, referring to the remarks by now-expelled BJP representative Nupur Sharma.
However, the latest reports of the Amravati murder which occurred a week before the Udaipur killing have again brought attention to Dawat-e-Islami.
The Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism (ATS) on July 2 arrived in Amravati to investigate the terror angle in connection with the case where a 54-year-old chemist was stabbed to death.
The ATS would also try to determine whether the accused arrested used the same pattern as the Udaipur incident. The agency will further investigate whether it is part of a larger conspiracy of carrying out mass beheadings across India.