Post-fatwa, Ramdev aide says firm has 5,000 Muslims
DEHRADUN: A day after a fatwa was issued by a Tamil Nadu-based Muslim organisation against Patanjali products alleging that they were made using cow urine, Acharya Balkrishna, yoga guru Ramdev’s top associate, lashed out “at those who are against the economic development of the country and its communal harmony”.
A fuming Balkrishna said there are over 5,000 Muslim workers at Patanjali’s Haridwar plant and the organization will be providing employment to many more in future “irrespective of cast, colour and creed”. He added that of 800 products that Patanjali churns out, only five (godhan ark, kayakalp oil, panchagavya soap, phenyl and sanjivani vati) contain ‘gau mutra’ (cow urine). “Moreover,” he said, “this information is not concealed. In fact, a significant number of consumers of Patanjali products in Haridwar are Muslims, who are attracted to its cheap price and also because they are the ones who are manufacturing it.”
Tagging the motive of the fatwa “haram”, Balakrishna said, “It’s a way to tarnish the brand image of Patanjali by adding a communal element to it. Giving a purely commercial issue a communal colour is to manipulate ignorant minds. We have renowned companies such as Himalayan and Hamdard, which are owned by Muslims, but Hindu shankaracharyas never bar anyone from using their products, simply because their products are beneficial for people and also because they are contributing to the economy of our country.”
On Tuesday, Tamil Nadu Thowheed Jamat (TNTJ) had said cow’s urine was being used as a key ingredient in cosmetics, medicines and food products of Patanjali that are available in open markets as well as online. In a release, TNTJ added, “According to the beliefs of Muslims, cow’s urine is haram which should not be used. Therefore, TNTJ issues a fatwa that products of Patanjali are haram.” The fatwa was being issued, the statement said, to ensure that such products were not consumed by Muslims due to a lack of awareness about the ingredients.
This came even as the Naib Sunni Shehar Qazi of Dehradun, Sayyad Ashraf Husain, said he supported the fatwa on Patanjali products and that he will ask Muslims not to use those that have urine content. “Using products laced with human/animal urine is haram in Islam, be it cosmetic products or life saving medicines,” he added.