Indian Print Media and its Reportage on Fatwas

Abstract: In my research as an Independent Fellow at Sarai (my topic is ‘Indian Print Media and it’s Reportage on fatawas) I want to see how much the media has been sensitive when they report about fatawas. Do they understand what a fatwa is? Do they understand the role it plays in the lives of Muslims, if it plays any role at all? Why does an obscure maulvi issuing a fatwa become a newsworthy item at all? I will try to trace the history of fatwa reportage in the Indian print media going back to the time of the reports of the infamous fatwa that was given about Salman Rushdie, depending of course, on the access to archives.

I will also try to look at the manner in which the whole world of fatawas operates and try to find out the relevance it holds for a contemporary Indian Muslim by trying to visit prominent madrasas across India that are affiliated to the various sects within Indian Islam.

Bio: Vikhar Ahmed Saeed has an MA in history from Jawaharlal Nehru University and a degree in journalism from the Asian College of Journalism, Chennai.

Email: vikharjnu @

1-Introduction to Project

2- Fatwas and Objectivity

3-Side note: discussion on Irshad Manji

4- The Coverage of Fatwas in Recent Journalism