News Brief

Trudeau Accused Of Pandering To Islamic Vote Block As Halal Mortgages Decision Leads To Public Outcry In Canada

Bhuvan Krishna

Apr 18, 2024, 02:55 PM | Updated 02:55 PM IST

Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

The Trudeau government's exploration of Halal mortgages for public banks has sparked controversy and divided opinions in Canada as per a report by Hindustan Times.

The proposal, announced during the federal budget speech, aims to provide an alternative financing option for the Muslim community in accordance with Islamic Sharia law, which prohibits interest payments.

Halal mortgages adhere to Islamic law, which prohibits the charging of interest, deeming it usury, or lending money at high rates of interest. Islamic financial institutions offer distinct mortgage products that avoid conventional interest payments.

While some Canadian financial institutions already provide mortgages compliant with Islamic law, none of the country's five major banks currently offer such products. Experts suggest that these alternative mortgages may not be completely interest-free but could instead involve regular fees.

While some support the idea as a way to accommodate diverse religious practices, others have criticised it, questioning its fairness and economic implications.

The announcement has also attracted political backlash, with some accusing the Trudeau government of pandering to the Muslim voting block.

Questions have been raised about the fairness and economic viability of Halal mortgages, with critics like Don Johnson and Jayme Knyx highlighting concerns about the government's priorities.

Knyx stated, "This is how the Liberals are trying to win back the Muslim voting block with Halal mortgages, but ask them, 'What is a woman?"

As consultations continue, the debate over Halal mortgages reflects broader discussions about the intersection of religion and public policy in Canada.

It remains to be seen how the Trudeau government will address these concerns while striving to meet the needs of the Muslim community.

Bhuvan Krishna is Staff Writer at Swarajya.

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