Moeen Ali's father, Munir, has said he was shocked and hurt after reading Bangladeshi author Taslima Nasreen's comment about his son that created a furore on social media. Munir said he was surprised that the controversial author picked her son of all people to make what he believes is a "vile remark".
Taslima Nasreen is being criticised on social media for her unforeseen tweet on Moeen Ali, the World Cup-winning all-rounder from England. The author said Ali would have joined the Islamic State had he not pursued cricket and stuck to it.
"If Moeen Ali were not stuck with cricket, he would have gone to Syria to join ISIS," Nasreen wrote, inviting criticism from the cricket fraternity.
Quite a few, including Moeen Ali's England teammate Jofra Archer, took to Twitter to hit out at Taslima Nasreen for her post. However, Nasreen defended her post, saying it was "sarcastic" while explaining how her detractors used the post against her.
"Haters know very well that my Moeen Ali tweet was sarcastic. But they made that an issue to humiliate me because I try to secularize Muslim society & I oppose Islamic fanaticism," she added.
Would ask her to find out the meaning of sarcasm'
Munir Ali, speaking to The Indian Express, hit out at Taslima Nasreen, saying her post was clearly an "Islamaphobic statement".
"I am hurt and shocked to read Taslima Nasreen's vile remark against my son Mooen. In her "clarifying" tweet, where she described her original remark as sarcasm, she also says she stands against fundamentalism," Munir was quoted as saying.
"If she looks into a mirror, she will know what she tweeted is what is fundamentalist - a vicious stereotype against a Muslim person, a clearly Islamophobic statement. Someone who doesn't have self-respect and respect for others can only stoop to this level.
"Truth be told, I am really angry, but I know I would be playing into the hands of people like her if I let my rage get out of control. If I get to meet her someday, I will tell what I really think of her on her face. For now, I would ask her to pick a dictionary and see the meaning of sarcasm.
"It's not what she thinks it is. It's not spewing vile poisonous stuff against someone you don't even know and then retracting it by saying it was sarcasm. Of all the people to pick on for her agenda, I can't believe she has chosen my son. Everyone in the cricketing world knows the person he is," he added.
Archer came down heavily on Nasreen, especially after the author defended her post on Ali. "Sarcastic? No one is laughing, not even yourself, the least you can do is delete the tweet," Archer had said.
Moeen Ali, who won the 2019 World Cup with England, has been in Mumbai with the Chennai Super Kings, gearing up for Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021. Ali was bought by CSK for Rs 7 crore at the IPL 2021 auction.