Azaan row: Sonu Nigam shaves head in response to moulvi’s statement

MUMBAI: Responding to a West Bengal cleric’s ‘fatwa’ offering Rs.10 lakhs to shave off Nigam’s head, singer Sonu Nigam shave off his head completely bald.

Sonu Nigam took up the challenge, calling a Muslim barber to do the job.

“I have requested Aalim (Hakim) to come. He will shave my head, but it isn’t any agitation or challenge. The one who is cutting hair is a Muslim and I am a Hindu. There is no animosity,” Nigam said here.

Nigam underlined that he never meant any offence.

“Being secular means understanding each other’s problems and not saying ‘I am only right’. ‘Aazan zaruri hai, loudspeaker nahi’ (Aazan is necessary, not the loudspeakers).

“That’s my only point. It is about the timing. Loudspeaker shouldn’t be used at a wrong time. Even when we perform, there is a proper time,” added the singer.

Nigam invited the media, saying he will go bald at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, saying: “Today at 2 p.m, Aalim will come to my place and shave my head. Keep your 10 lakhs ready Maulvi,” he tweeted.

The singer appeared before journalists with a clean-shaven pate, wearing spectacles and smiling away.

Syed Sha Atef Ali Al Quaderi, vice president, West Bengal Minority United Council yesterday announced a bounty of Rs. 10 lakhs to anybody who can tonsure Nigam and garland him with old shoes.

“If anyone can shave his hair, put a garland of old torn shoes around his neck and tour him around the country, I shall personally reward that person with Rs 10 lakh,” Syed Sha Atef Ali Al Quaderi, the vice-president of West Bengal United Minority Council, said on Tuesday.

On Monday, Nigam blew up a controversy when he lashed out as “forced religiousness” in India after being woken up the aazaan’ (Muslim calls for prayer) from a mosque near his home.

In a series of tweets clarifying his position, Nigam said: “For those who are tainting my tweets anti-Muslim, tell me one place where I have said anything related, and I’ll apologise.”

An FIR has been filed against Sonu Nigam before CJM Panipat(Haryana) under sections 294,295,295A,296,500,501 of IPC over his morning Azaan remarks.

With agencies input