Hunger Strikes are Haram

Jan 20th, 2006, in News, by

A group of villagers in west Java, who are on a hunger strike over the positioning of high-voltage power lines near their houses, have had the fear of hellfire put into them by the West Java Indonesian Ulema Council which issued an edict condemning hunger strikes as sinful in Islam.

The West Java branch of the Indonesian Ulema Council, in assuming that the protesters are practising Muslims, said that harming oneself was forbidden, or haram, in Islam. Said Hafidz Ustman of the Council:

This is a call, not an fatwa. It is (the residents’ rights) to demand something, but not by sacrificing themselves. The strike does not only harm themselves, but also their relatives.

and

All government officials, including the President, know (about the case). Islam doesn’t advocate violence in solving problems. Hunger strikes, as mentioned in a part of the Koran, is an act of violence.

We wish he had quoted the relevant passage in the Koran.

Previously the protesters had refused to pay their power bills but the Indonesian Ulema Council was at that time leaned on by the state electricity company to issue an edict saying paying your bills is a religious duty. So the people paid up.

It now appears the Council have been persuaded once again to bring the full force of their learned authority on the poor people of the village of Ciseeng. One can only wonder if money has changed hands between the electricity company and the Ulema Council and also over the wisdom of state bodies resorting to clerical persuasion to enforce laws.


2 Comments on “Hunger Strikes are Haram”

  1. Felis says:

    We wish he had quoted the relevant passage in the Koran. LOL

    I don’t recall anything in the Quran about hunbger strikes.
    As always the imams stretched the Allah’s teachings a tad to suit the occasion.

  2. Zarook says:

    There is not a single verse or a line about hunger strike in the Quran. Please do not
    make a mockery of my faith. If people have genuine grevences it is the duty of those in power and position to resolve them peacefully. Dear Ulemas, we respect you, for your knowledge and wisdom. Sorry in this case we fined neither.

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