Ali couldn’t believe his eyes and ears when a white Englishman offered to buy his Indian restaurant.
This was not what he was expecting. Only Muslims, and mainly those of Bangladeshi descent, buy Indian restaurants in the UK, not pasty-faced middle-aged Christians.
This was not going to be a business venture of great money-making proportions, but more of a God-led calling to save a Muslim soul from Hell.
I had never run a restaurant before, and I am by no means a chef. I was completely reliant on God to get me through the next few years. So the decision to buy the restaurant was made not from a proper business point of view, but from a spiritual one. My attitude was that you come into the world with nothing and you leave with nothing. Anything in between is God-given.
Sayem, a Muslim waiter at the Singleton Tandoori, was asking searching questions about Christianity and telling me about Islam. Conversations deepened, and after he received a vision of Jesus in a dream (a popular way for Muslims to know Christ), he was baptised in June 2017. That was the day I knew why this pasty-faced middle-aged Christian had bought an Indian Restaurant.
Reading about Islam is not the same as immersing yourself in it, and running an Indian restaurant, and employing Muslims is the closest I could get to total immersion without, God forbid, converting.
None of the Muslims staff were united, they were all jealous of each other and bickered a lot. Everyone was a “no 1 liar” – their favourite phrase- as if they had some sort of chart going on and none of them trusted one another. Toward me they were fine. They worked hard and produced a good curry, but I couldn’t recognise them in Islamic text. The Islamic texts that talk about not making friends with the Kafir and about killing the unbeliever were not the instructions these fellows were following. These guys were normal; these guys were just like most Muslims.
Muslims are just ordinary people who follow Islam, a religion, an ideology a belief system that is man-made and which holds them in check. Leaving Islam makes you an apostate, a figure of hate, isolated from friends and family. You cannot hate Muslims, as they are men and women, but you can hate the doctrine, the creed that they are following.
It is Incredible how most Muslims have not got a clue about the truth of Islam, and certainly the same goes for most of the rest of us.
This is because the media are silent on the truth of Islam, and the silence is deafening. And by being silent, they are in fact lying to the public.
The silence of the media made me angry. I couldn’t just sit still and do nothing, so I decided to get a long way out of my comfort zone and pitch up outside the BBC to stage a game-changing one-man protest act.
Every week, I would travel on the High Speed train from Ashford International to London St. Pancras International and head straight for Broadcasting House, Langham Place with my “#lovemuslimshateislam Time For The Truth!” placard.
Immediately after I arrived the first time, a pretty young girl told me she liked my sign and thanked me for it. I was buoyed by this and remained happy to sit on the ledge inside the Langham Place courtyard, waiting for a reaction. I didn’t have long to wait before four burly guys came walking by with hard hats and yellow hi-viz vests on. When they told me they were Muslims, I thought the worst, but to my relief, and as an answer to my prayer, they agreed with my sign too!
After a few weeks, when the Westminster attack happened, in March 2017, I turned my attention to that side of the capital. Then I went to London Bridge, after the attack there weeks later, provoking an interesting but mixed reaction from locals and tourists alike.
When I read that Southwark Cathedral was holding a public service for the victims of the London Bridge attacks, I couldn’t resist. I just had to be there and let all of my 33 Twitter followers know of my intention to be outside. Little did I know that Southwark Cathedral was also one of my many followers and that someone from there would alert the police in advance of my plan.
My freedom of speech was severely tested when two Metropolitan Police officers took exception to the “hate Islam” part of my placard and, despite my protestations of innocence, they decided to arrest me under the Crime and Disorder Act.
After 13 hours locked in a police cell, at silly o’clock in the morning, the police finally released me on the condition that I would not be allowed to go anywhere near Southwark Cathedral. I found myself outside Elephant and Castle tube station trying to find working public transport, only to discover that the last tube train had gone. I decided to try my luck and walk to the main line London Bridge Station, only to realise that within minutes of being released, I had already broken my bail conditions.
Weeks dragged by until the Crown Prosecution Service finally came to their senses and dropped the charges against me, leaving the way open for me to sue the Met for wrongful arrest.
Of course, the left want to accuse me of Islamophobia and call me racist. They have no idea that I am a son of an immigrant, that my wife is an immigrant, or that I own an Indian Restaurant and employ Muslims, so I always reply “Which part of me is Islamophobic? Which part is racist?”