Anti-Islam leaflet delivery to Muslim homes in Preston 'was just our Christian right of reply'

Pav Akhtar with the anti-Islam leaflet that was hand delivered to his home
Pav Akhtar with the anti-Islam leaflet that was hand delivered to his home

The people behind the delivery of leaflets ridiculing Islam to Muslim homes in Preston have claimed that no offence was intended and it was merely a 'right of reply'.

Several Muslim families in the Blackpool Road area of Preston have reported being upset by hand-delivered leaflets that made offensive claims about their religion.

But a man involved in the leafleting claims that it was merely a "right of reply" from Christians, and that local families have nothing to fear.

Lancashire Police are currently investigating whether a hate crime was committed.

Michael Davis, who describes himself as a Lancashire-based independent Christian, said: "They have nothing to worry about. There was no offence intended and there won't be any more.

"This was simply a right of reply from Christians.

"Over the summer the Muslims held an event on the Flag Market in Preston and passed out leaflets.

"There has also been door-to-door canvassing by Muslims in the city, for example at the time of local elections.

"This was our reaction to that."

He said that around 15 homes in the Blackpool Road area of the city had the leaflets delivered, and they had targeted homes that had previously been seen to display political posters such as local election posters or Brexit material.

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One of the homes that received a leaflet was owned by Pav Akhtar, 40, A governor at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

He said: “We had a hand delivered note addressed to us directly.

“What was most concerning for us is that each note was a handwritten letter sent to six specific households.

“It was sent only to Asian people in the neighbourhood. It was targeted especially to Asian Muslim families. None of the white neighbours received it and our Sikh neighbours also didn’t get them.

“We were purposefully targeted.”

One of the cartoon featured in the booklet shows a man wearing a headscarf acting in a threatening manner.

A caption says: “Islam is the second largest and fastest growing religion in America… and you should fear it.”

Pav said: "Basically it is a really hateful, distorted narrative that is feeding the views of far right extremism."

Lancashire Police confirmed that the force was investigating the reports.

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A spokesman said: “Between 10am and noon on October 9, an anti-Islamist book was delivered to an address on Blackpool Road.

“A further report of the same book being delivered to another address on the street was received on October 12.”

The Lancashire Post has passed on information about the Christian group to the police.

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