Fasts And Non-Believing Citizens

Question

I am an overseas Pakistani. In the month of Ramadan particularly in Pakistan and in the Middle Eastern countries it is not allowed to anyone (Muslim or Non-Muslim) to eat or drink anything during fasting time. If policemen found anyone not respecting the fasting time he pushed him behind bars. Why it is like this? Fasting is something between God and His men. Fasting is one of the pillars of Islam like Namaz. They are so many people who do not pray during the Namaz time. I ask from one of Aalim about this he replied me that since it is a Muslim country so all non Muslims have to respect the Muslim laws. If it is the case then France and other non Muslim countries have every right to prohibit the Muslim women not to observe veil because it is their country. Please explain me in the light of Quran and Hadith.


Answer

We believe that it is not the right of the government even to force the Muslims to observe fast. However, the govenment can ask the minority to respect the ritual and not eat openly. However, there must be ways for the Non-Muslims to obtain food in their hotels and homes. Also it is not justified to put the people behind the bar that seems to be a strict measure. There could be other ways of putting people to the right track.

Analogy between the prohibition of wearing veil and prohibition of forbidding eating in open is not a very accurate one. By wearing a veil a Muslim lady does not offend the customs and rites of that country. It is only militant liberals who impose such restrictions which defy even their expressed claims and ideals. However Muslims need to improve their conduct in thier contries and not look to what other do in making their policies.

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