An Open letter to Shoaib Akhtar

Mr. Shoaib Akhtar,

I saw a video of yours, in which you blamed China’s eating habits for the global coronavirus outbreak and alleged that the Chinese had put the ‘world at stake’. You asked how can anyone eat bats, dogs and cats?

You said, “I don’t understand – if God has made halal animals, why are you eating haram. When God has given you so much livestock, why can’t you eat that? Why do you have to eat bats, cats and dogs, drink their urine, their blood, and spread the virus in the entire world? I don’t understand, I’m really angry,”

Mr. Akhtar, I seriously think that people like you, who have the ability to reach the masses, should be a lot more careful while passing such statements. What made you bring the concept of “Halal and Haram” in the present time of Coronavirus? What made you assume that billions all over the world would agree to your belief of ‘some animals being made Halal by God’?

While you may try to desperately fit your thinking and culture in the present times and blame everything on a culture and lifestyle that you don’t believe in, there are others who might blame you for the same.

In India, scriptures related to Hinduism, Sikhism, Jainism and Buddhism teach people to be complete vegetarians and they consider eating any non-vegetarian item (even the ones that may be Halal for you) as huge sins.

Hindu Mahasabha sees Coronavirus as a conscious being that have risen to punish non vegetarians. According to them, “Corona is not a virus, but a conscious power for the protection of poor creatures. they have come to give the message of death and punishment to the one who eats them.”

Some (including millions of atheists) believe that as the clock ticks on, mankind should evolve to be more civilised and humane. As Leonardo Da Vinci once said, “The time will come when men such as I will look upon the murder of animals as now they look upon the murder of men”.

So, there are millions who would directly blame you, your culture and lifestyle, for having murdered billions of innocent animals (which you conveniently consider as halal) so as to fill your bellies, thereby creating a huge karmic imbalance.

Billions of Buddhists, Jains & Sanatan Dharmis very strongly believe that these karmic imbalances lead to natural disasters and epidemics that kill millions.

There are billions who might hundred percent disagree with you, and yet they remain silent, patient, respect every culture, and respect every human’s right to choose. They don’t use people’s pains and sufferings to project their own beliefs on others.

Leaving aside the concept of halal and haram, I strongly feel that more needs to be done to stop the harmful stereotypes that surface during outbreaks. Promoting one’s own beliefs and criticizing other cultures, secret conspiracies, and depraved deviants offer the most irresistible explanation. such dangerous narratives are encouraging racism and hate by portraying vulnerable populations as virulent carriers, rather than victims worthy of empathy and sympathy.


An Indian.

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