Aamir Hussain Khan hails from a typically staunch, conservative and orthodox Muslim family originating from the Khan clan of Peshawar. Belonging to the Shia clan he has never hidden the fact that right from childhood he was quite liberal minded and moreover a rebel person at heart.
He has always made it very clear that more than believing in and having total faith in Islamic religion he has always and completely reposed his faith in ‘Allah’(God), the one and only supreme power of the entire universe. While his friends insist that he is not anti-religious at all but at the same time he is not a fanatic either. So sure enough eyebrows were raised when he married his childhood sweetheart a Hindu-Bengali lass named Reena Dutta and once again a Hindu belle Kiran Rao. The first query on everyone’s lips was would he go the Shahrukh Khan way as far as religious worship was concerned. But true to his words, Aamir Khan silenced his critics in this interactive session with Shaheen Raaj. Let’s see how?
What does religion in general and Islamic religion in particular mean to you?
It may mean anything to me, that’s secondary. I hate the division of religion in itself at the behest of mankind themselves. Like you just made a very uncalled for and a very discriminatory remark about religion! In my eyes religion is religion. I really hate its classification. Anyways coming to the point, I would say that as far as I am concerned no I am not a highly religious person at all. I believe more in spirituality. Moreover, I have always reposed my total faith in ‘Allah’ the only supreme power guiding and ruling this universe. I pray to him in my mind with every breath of mine. I don’t have to seek out the particular 5 times only to offer him my respects. In fact I have a direct conversation with him in times of happiness, in times of success and above all in times of sadness and failures too.
So what about the rituals and tenets of Islamic religion as preached by Prophet Mohammad (S.A.W), may peace be upon him, in the Holy book of Quran?
I am not saying that one should overlook this aspect of the Islamic religion. But I do believe in the principle of ‘To each his own’ what I elaborately mean to express is that whether I offer my 5 times ‘Namaz’ (5 times prayers) or not? Whether I observe my ‘Rozas’ (Fasting) in the Holy month of ‘Ramzan’ or not? Whether I do the regular ‘Tilavat’ (Reading) of the ‘Quransharif’ (The Holy Book) or not? Whether I have performed my ‘Haj’ or ‘Umra’ (Both pilgrimages to Mecca and Medina) or not? Whether I take care of the ‘Zakaat’ (2.5% of net yearly income to be disbursed to the poor and needy) the ‘Fitra’ (Protection of life of the widows and extremely needy people) and the ‘Khairaat (Giving Alms to Beggars) or not? All these are questions that I do not have to answer to one and all. No I am not answerable to anyone accept my ‘Khuda’ (God). Yes, I am also aware that when I take ‘Rukhsat’ (Good Bye) from this world I will have to face all the repercussions of all my ‘Gunahs’(Sins). So it could be ‘Sawab’ (Blessings) or it could be ‘Ajaab’ (Curse) considering the fact that ‘Allah’ ne mere hisse ki nekiyan bhi nazar andaaz na ki hogi (God has not overlooked the goodness in me). To sum it up, I would say that meri nekiyaan aur meri badiyaan (My good deeds and my bad deeds) is something that is strictly an affair to be dealt with and considered by my ‘Allah Miyan’ alone.
So how do you observe the Holy month of ‘Ramzan’?
Just as every true ‘Mussalmaan’ (Muslim person) does. But my policy is that ke main dikhawa karne yaa apne ‘Allah’ ki raah mein ki gayee ibaadat ki badayee maarne mein yakeen nahin karta hoon. (I do not believe in showing off my prayers and practices to the world). Sorry to say but the mentality of some people in general is still very conservative. So at the slightest pretext they bother more about others ‘Imaan’ (Faith) and ‘Aamaal’ (Worship) rather than their own. So it’s not really surprising when you hear people making nasty comments behind my back, of course. For them Aamir Khan ‘Namaz’ nahin padta (does not offer 5 times prayers) ya Shahrukh Khan ‘Roza’ nahin rakhta (does not observe fasting) is more of a sensation than a food for thought. Does anybody even bother or stop to give a thought that being a celebrity we do have a lot of limitations and other problems. And by this statement I am not at all justifying my stand on my own principles of religion.
Did you face any religious dilemma while you were married to a Hindu lady Reena Dutta and later on to Kiran Rao?
No, none whatsoever. We never practiced each other’s religion neither did we force each other to do so. But, of course, I had made it very clear that my kids will always follow only Islamic religion.
– Shaheen Raaj/Sampurn Wire