මීට පෙර කිහිප වතාවකම අප හලාල් බොරුව ගැන කළ හෙළිදරවු වලදී බොහෝ විවේචකයන් අපට කීවේ ACJU (සමස්ත ලංකා ජම්මියතුල් උලාමාව) යනු ඉතාම අහිංසක, කුරා කුහුඹුවකුට වත් වරදක් නොකරන ඉතාම මධ්යස්ථ ආගමික සංවිධානයක් බවයි. එය එසේමද නැද්ද යන්න පිළිබඳව අප විසින් හාර හාරා කරන ලද සොයා ගැනීමකට අනුව පහත ඊ-ලිපිය පල කරමු. අපේ පරිවර්තනය ගැන සැක ඇති බොහෝ දෙනා ඇති බැවින් අපි මුල් ලිපිය අකුරකිනුදු වෙනස් නොකොට මෙහි බහා ලමු. මෙහි පරිවර්තනයක් අපි මීට පසුවට එකතු කිරීමට බලාපොරොත්තු වෙමු.
Dr Mareena Refa: wrote: an acid test- will they or won’t they?
Date: Sat, 2 Jun 2012 10:46:40 -0700
Subject: Open Letter to All Ceylon Jaamiathul-Ulama
CEYLINCO PROFIT SHARING DEPOSITORS’ ASSOCIATION-(Reg GA 2604)
No.17, Sumanarama Road, Mt. Lavinia- email: firstname.lastname@example.org
AN OPEN LETTER TO ALL CEYLON JAAMAIATHUL-ULAMA
Al-Haj Rizwie Mufthi
All Ceylon Jaamia-thu-Ulama
It is with great regret that we write this letter. Despite our numerous requests and pleads All Ceylon Jaamia-thul Ulama (ACJU) has not made any attempt to resolve the problem of Depositors’ of Ceylinco Profit Sharing Investment (CPSICL) Company, a one time well known Islamic financial institution in Sri Lanka.
Since September 2009 we have met with ACJU Board members on three occasions and at all such meetings it was agreed that ACJU will actively get involved in resolving matters pertaining to the Depositors of CPSICL. However up to now ACJU has not taken any constructive measures nor made any attempts to find a solution to the on-going crisis of depositors’ of CPSICL. As a result poor depositors are struggling continuously.
ACJU’S Propaganda in promoting CPSICL from its’ inception
It is a well known fact that several members (Ulama) of ACJU promoted CPSICL on the air at ‘Sahar’ time during the month of Ramdhan. ACJU members spoke about the CPSICL and advised Muslims to invest in the Company. It was reported that large amount money has been spent by the Company for promotion and advertising using members if ACJU.
In certain situations members of ACJU participated at the opening ceremonies of branches in different parts of the island along with the Management of CPSICL. After the openings of branches these Ulamas made speeches which attracted poor Muslims to the deposit their money with this Company. Also every CPSICL branch carry a name board of the Shariah Board who had been appointed by the ACJU.
The Muslim community knew little about the owners of the Company but they had a high respect and trusted our religious leaders who are there to guide the community in right path.
Negligence and ignorant from the Shariah Board appointed by ACJUThe ACJU appointed a Shariah Board to the CPSICL to monitor all its’ transaction and ensure that these transactions were done in accordance with the Islamic financing norms. (Initial members of the Shariah Board were Late Niyas Moulavi, Yusoof Mufthi, Abdul N’asar Moulavi, Salahhuddin Moulavi, Fazil Farook Moulavi and Laffar Moulavi). It is a regret that the Shariah Board did not perform their duties which they ought to have done and acted with negligence, ignorance and in some instances with conflict of interest. Following are some non-compliance acts caused by the Shariah Board.
1. According to the Finance Act of 1988 no institution shall obtain money from public unless such institution has been registered under the Central Bank. CPSICL is not an institution which was registered under the Finance Act and CPSICL has violated the basic law of the country. Thus it is unbelievable that ACJU has promoted a company which has violated the basic rule of the country.
2. In certain cases CPSICL did not invest in a manner which will bring them a return by halaal means. The CPSICL granted a loan to a leading night club in Colombo and interest has been received by the CPSICL. This was in turn paid back to depositors as profit earned. This is a clear misconduct of the Shariah Board on whom the Muslim depositors have kept faith to receive halaal earnings.
3. One of the duties and responsibilities of the Shariah Board Shall be ‘ Endorsing and validating relevant documentations including contracts, agreements or other legal documentations used in executing transaction’. (extracted from People Leasing annual report-shariah compliance).It is noted that CPSICL granted loans to certain companies where are non-existent legally.
4. Most of the investment made or loans given by CPSICL were to companies within the Ceylinco Group. There is no clear evidence (even today) that these Ceylinco
companies are carrying out its’ business in a Shariah compliance manner. The appointed Shariah Board approved all these transactions and were witnessed to them as well.
5. It was also noted that a few members of the Shariah Board while serving in the Shariah Board to the CPSICL, had obtained personal loans. We believe the ACJU must have set up a certain code of ethics on it’s Shariah Board members but under normal circumstances and understanding when you have entered in to transactions for personal benefits with another, you will not be able to carry out your obligations with objectivity and independence for the benefit of a third party.
It would have been much better and would have helped the Muslim community if the Shairah Board had play their role with more responsibility and due care because :
a. Ulamas advice is vital and they are executing almighty God’s concept. So there cannot be any room for misappropriation. If Shariah Board members were not fully skilled to carry out God’s concept, they should not have played around such a serious task. For instant, when one of depositor inquired about the issue from one of the Shariah Board member and a moulavi (from Puttalam) stated that they are not supposed to open the cupboard at CPSICL and see what is happening. Dear Mufthi, is this God’s concept of Islamic financing is such a simple concept. There are so many methods in accounting and auditing environment to trace any misappropriation including to see “ what is in the cupboard?” as mentioned by the above Shariah board member. This great concept is valid even today and is able to fit in all internal control requirements that exist in Islamic Banking environment.
b. Secondly all the members of the Shariah Board were paid a fee for each sitting by the CPSICL. This is again poor depositors’ money. So members of the Shariah board have morale duty and responsibility to execute their function in proper manner
ACJU’s Withdrawal from CPSICL and it’s Shariah BoardDuring the meetings we had with you and your other members, ACJU was trying to emphasise that the ACJU and it’s members had withdrawn from the CPSICL’s Shariah Board. However we observed that ACJU had issued a warning letter to CPSICL only on the 29th October 2008 by which time all the damages had been done.
You also mentioned that there was a newspaper notice published (in English)stating that ACJU had withdrawn it’s Shariah Board from CPSICL. So far we have met over 1,000 depositors and have not come across a single depositor who had seen this withdrawal notice published by ACJU. Moreover most of the Muslim brothers and sisters read Tamil news paper and it is very unfair for them to publish such vital notice only in English news paper. Also ACJU should have published notice in all mosques in the island as they now do when a halaal certificate is been cancelled for any product/outlet. This is a better way of notifying the community which is a best communication mode even in any centuries.
Now former members of CPSICL’s Shariah Board are busy with other Islamic BanksNow ACJU members who served in the CPSICL’s Shariah Board are now serving in the Shariah Boards other Islamic financial institutions/Banks’. ACJU and its leadership have failed to investigate any acts of negligence and inappropriate duties carried out by those Shariah Board members when they were serving at CPSICL. Instead these members are promoting other Islamic banks leaving the affected depositors of CPSICL to the dust.
The other question that begs an answer is, are these Shariah Board members capable enough to advise Islamic Banking in Sri Lanka and to what extent the general public can rely on them and other Islamic banks being properly monitored in accordance with Shariah guidelines. ACJU should have conducted an inquiry on these former Shariah Board members before allow them to function in other Islamic Banks/Institutions.
Suffering of Poor depositorsToday our poor depositors are suffering extremely, having deposited all their hard earned money with CPSICL. Amongst us there are widows, retired persons, parents who saved money for their daughters’ nikah, their children’s educations, with all their aspirations coming to a standstill. Moreover, there are Mulsim Orpahanges, elders’ homes and even funds belonging to certain mosques in rural areas. All these depositors only knew ACJU Ulamas. They deposited their money because of ‘Fatwas’ given by members of and not because they knew or had faith in Lalith Kotelawala.
The suffering of these depositors is depressing and heart rendering. If you are willing to join us, we can take you to all parts of the island and show you the extent that they depended on the money deposited with CPSICL and the faith they had on Ulamas’ ‘Fatwa’ and Islamic financing. Widows have no means of living while what their husband had left for them have been lost. Retired families are struggling as their lifetime earnings have been lost. Parents are unable to give their daughters in marriage. This has lead to a social dilemma of the community for which ACJU is also partially responsible .
Number of requests on ACJUWe as a committee requested ACJU to actively get involved in our effort to get our money back. But up to now no solid action has been taken by the ACJU in this regard.
There are other Islamic banks in Sri Lanka and we requested on a number of occasions that discussion should be held with these banks to rescue CPSICL. There was no effort to take this suggestion forward as well.
We also requested you to hold a meeting with Ceylinco chairman Lalith Kotelalwala about this crisis. Because your Shariah members went with Lalith Kotelawala when each and every branch of CPSICL was opened. But you failed to meet Lalaiht Kotelawal on behalf of depositors as well.
It is a known fact that deputy Minister Hisbullah together with his wife owes Rs. 140m to CPSICL. The money was obtained in 2004 from CPSICL. We requested you to contact Kattankudy Jaamiathul Ulama and bring deputy minister Hisbullah to the table for discussion. Because he is a politician who has been elected by people and has responsibility towards the public. ACJU has a right to persuade the deputy Minister on this matter as ACJU is the governing body of the Muslim community. ACJU should be able to come strongly whenever our community or section of community is affected. However you have turned down this request, instead your ACJU members participated and accompanied Dr. Zakir Nahik to Hisbullah’s residence in Kattankudy for fund raising function.
Dear Mufthi, we all would like to see the concept of Islamic Finance develop in this great country. In this country which Adam (AS) stepped foot on when he was sent down to earth, any prospective Islamic ideal is possible. What is needed is the right direction and guidance by a supreme governing body like ACJU.
However, we have not given up our fight in getting our money back. We know we earned this money through halaal earnings and insha-allah we will get our money back. We will take every measure possible in this regard, including legal. However it is pathetic that ACJU is still silent on this matter. May Allah grant you and ACJU members the courage to come forward and help suffering depositors and be the true voice of Muslims in Sri Lanka.
‘Charity extinguishes sin as water extinguishes fire’-Prophet Mohamed SAWS (=Peace Be Upon Him)