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"There is nothing anti-Islamic in football," says Kerala Muslim cleric

New Delhi: Days after a circular was issued by Samastha Kerala Jam-Iyyathul Ulama in Kerala, criticising the soccer craze in the Muslim youth, Sajid Rashidi a Muslim cleric called out such circular and said that the football world cup is not "distracting" and is not "anti-muslim".
"There is nothing anti-Islamic in football. If it would have been why Qatar would host the World Cup. They should then issue an order against Qatar for hosting the football world cup. Anybody can take interest in football since it's a sport," said Sajid Rashidi. He further said that cheering up any player has nothing to do with religion and it's a personal choice.
"Cheering for a fan or even holding the flag of a country has nothing to do with religion. People from Pakistan can like Indian players and vice versa," said Sajid Rashidi.
Earlier, Nasar Faisi general secretary of Samastha Kerala Jamiyyathul Ulama, one of the largest Muslim organisations in Kerala landed himself into controversy over his remark on football.
"The devotees of football shouldn't spare prayer time for it since the sport is a drug," he said.
Nasar Faisi further added that the youth should refrain from spending money recklessly on cutouts and banners.
"An awareness will go in Mosques of the organisation against squandering of money in the name of cut-outs and unwanted banners in connection with the world cup," he said. (ANI)

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