Feb 21, Colombo: In a move to defuse growing tensions between the Sinhala and Muslim communities over the Halal certification of foods, the apex religious body of is Islamic clerics, All Ceylon Jamiyyathul Ulama (ACJU), today urged the Sri Lankan businesses to sell the Halal products only to Muslims.
The ACJU has requested the businesses to make available two sets of products, Halal certified foods for Muslims and non-Halal for others.
"Since the Halal Certification has been misunderstood the All Ceylon Jamiyyathul Ulama has decided to request the manufactures who have already obtained the certification to confine the certification to the products offered for sale to the Muslim Community only," ACJU President M.I.M Rizwe has told the media.
The move by the Islamic organization comes after months-long protests and an ultimatum given by the Buddhist extremist organization Bodu Bala Sena (Buddhist Force) to remove the Halal products from the businesses by March 31 ahead of the Sinhalese New Year festivities.
The Bodu Bala Sena has argued that the non-Muslims who don't require Islamic method of food processing, especially meat, have to pay more for Halal certified foods and businesses forcing Halal products on non-Muslims is a violation of their rights.
The ACJU clarifying the Halal certification said the Halal certificate has not been forced to any product and it is obtained voluntarily by the producers.