An Islamic organisation, Al-Iqaamah, has mounted a campaign against alcohol sales in Tower Hamlets.
Department of Business Regulation
The letter, dated December 11, 2013, reads in part (emphasis in the original):
RE: Your licence to sell alcohol has been revoked – DO NOT IGNORE THIS LETTER
Dear Business Owner
This letter is legal notice that you have no legal permission to sell, serve or stock alcohol at your premises. If you are still stocking, serving or selling any alcoholic products beverages, you must cease immediately.
Failure to comply with this notice to cease trading in alcoholic products is illegal and you will be liable to severe penalties as will be explained in this letter. Please note that you have no right to appeal this decision and you cannot apply for any further licences to serve alcohol on these premises or any other businesses you are associated with.
You have been formally warned that you are breaking the Prohibition of the sale of alcohol law chapter 4, sect. 90 of the quran, which states: “Alcohol, gambling, divination of arrows are only abominations of satan, so leave it so that you can be successful.”
On the same day, their website had a related entry, an excerpt of which follows:
If you own a business selling alcohol and have received a letter asking you to cease trading alcohol in accordance with the legal notice from Allah in the Qur’an, “O you who believe! Intoxicants and gambling, (dedication of) stones, and (divination by) arrows, are an abomination,- of Satan’s handwork: keep distance from such (abomination), that you may prosper.” [EMQ 5:90], you may be concerned to know what to do next.
Thankfully, you will be pleased to know that it is not too late to avoid a penalty. Allah (swt) is all forgiving and accepts repentance. You can still avoid facing any of the legal penalties of drinking, serving or selling alcohol such as:
- the curse of Allah,
- hellfire and
- the hudud punishment of forty lashes in public should you be convicted in a shariah court after the establishment of the upcoming Islamic state.
On Thursday, December 12, The Shariah Project prepared for a march against alcohol in Brick Lane. Yahoo News UK reported:
Critics have condemned the event on Friday a[s] “provocative,” with the potential to divide communities. Local businesses and residents were united in rejecting the march.
George, a student, said: “You’re living in a dreamland if you say alcohol shouldn’t be sold, as there’s a market for it. It’s silly to think to it’s not going to be on offer. “
The Shariah project claim boozing in Brick Lane is responsible for a range of problems from anti-social behaviour to hospital admissions. But that was contradicted by local businesses, who claimed behaviour if anything has improved in recent years.
Shop owner Ahmed said: “I’ve lived in Brick Lane in my life and I’ve just seen people having fun and that’s it. I reckon people are more civilised now and know not to do that. There’s less anti-social behaviour.”
Restaurant manager Gazi said a booze ban like Shariah Project want would hit businesses hard.
He said: “Our customers come down to Brick Lane can have a drink and enjoy themselves. We do not have any trouble with alcohol at all.”
On December 13, the International Business Times (IBT) reported:
A group of 30 Muslims marched along the street renowned for its bars, clubs and curry houses. They were led by radical preacher Anjem Choudary who used a megaphone to accuse restaurants and shops of breaking strict Islamic law.
The event organised by the little known Shariah Project, based in Waltham Forest, drew a small counter-demonstration by English nationalists.
A brief stand-off took place between the groups at Brick Lane’s junction with Whitechapel Road, with the sides kept apart by police officers – who outnumbered both groups combined.
Choudary said Brick Lane was “a den of iniquity.”
Police said the march ‘passed off without incident’.
However, it is of concern when a religious group poses as a council department. Isn’t that illegal? Why are there no prosecutions?
A commenter on the IBT article said:
This is about the replacement of democratic law, even in the barbaric and mob-rule sense that the IBTimes are imagining it is here. It is almost like the entire Western world has forgotten how to read. If you look at the notice they handed out, it is perfectly clear what they intend to do and the fact that there were no arrests beggars the imagination.
Between this and gender apartheid — which I covered yesterday — it is difficult to know where and how this will all end.