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  • Bangladesh Halal Travel Guide

Bangladesh Halal Travel Guide

Islam in Bangladesh

Bangladesh is a Muslim majority nation and Islam is the state religion of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh. The Muslim population was approximately 152 million, constituting 90.39% of the total population as of 2011 census and making Bangladesh the third-largest Muslim majority nation in the world after Indonesia and Pakistan. The majority of Bangladeshis are Sunni. They follow the Hanafi Islamic jurisprudence, but there is also an increasing numbers of the Ahle Hadith. Religion has always been a strong part of Bangladeshi identity, but the specific identity has varied at different times. Bangladesh although a developing country is one of the few secular Muslim majority countries in the world.

In the 9th century, Arab Muslims established commercial as well as religious contacts within the region before the conquest, mainly through the coastal regions as traders and primarily via the ports of Chittagong. Arab navigation in the region was the result of the Muslim reign over the Indus delta. Following the conquests of Muhammad bin Bakhtiyar Khalji and the establishment of the Delhi Sultanate, Indian Islamic missionaries achieved their greatest success in terms of successful dawah and number of converts to Islam in Bengal. Shah Jalal is thought to have spread Islam in the north-eastern Bengal and Assam during the beginning of the 12th century. The Islamic Bengal Sultanate, a major trading nation in the world, was founded by Shamsuddin Ilyas Shah after its independence from the Tughlaq dynasty. Subsequently, Bengal was conquered by Babur, the founder of one of the gunpowder empires, but was also briefly occupied by the Suri Empire.

Akbar the Great’s preaching of the syncretic Din-i Ilahi, was described as a blasphemy by the Qadi of Bengal, which caused huge controversies in South Asia. In the 17th century, under Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb’s Islamic sharia-based rule, the Bengal Subah, also known as The Paradise of the Nations, was worth over 12% of global GDP and one of the world’s leading manufacturing power, from which the Dutch East India Company hugely benefited. Concepts of the Islamic economics’s found in the Fatawa-e-Alamgiri delivered a significant direct contribution to the economy of Bengal, and the Proto-industrialization was signaled.

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