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'Bogus Muslims' exposed for 'fake it 'til you make it' attitude

Muslims faking sudden commitments to a religious lifestyle for political and financial gain are facing backlash from pious Muslims as well as criticism from secularists.
Turkey's President Tayyip Erdogan greets his supporters in front of a mosque after Friday prayers in Istanbul, Turkey, May 29, 2015. Erdogan said the launch of Ziraat Bank's Islamic business should help to attract new funds to Turkey and urged other state lenders to help to triple Islamic banking's share of the market by 2023. Islamic finance has developed slowly in Turkey, the world's eighth most populous Muslim nation, partly because of political sensitivities and the secular nature of its laws. However,

Two photos of former Justice and Development Party (AKP) parliamentarian Rifat Sait and his wife appeared in Turkish newspapers June 10. In one image, the politician has a healthy, pious beard, and his wife wears a headscarf. In the other, more recent photo, Sait is clean shaven and wears a tie, while his wife is no longer covered. Publication of the photos has raised the issue of “bogus Muslims” and loss of faith in the AKP.

Reports have alleged that once Sait understood he would not be elected on the AKP ticket, he and his wife reverted to their secular selves. Sait issued a press release June 14 stating, “My wife and I made the hajj in September 2014, and after that she decided to become a hijabi [cover her hair], and I did not trim my beard. Then I decided to trim my beard going back to my job at the parliament. My wife, under her own will, decided to remove her headscarf. Our choices have nothing to do with the election.”

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