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Thank God We Have Pakistan

The sudden outbreak of riots in neighboring India and merciless killings and setting Muslims on fire alive has shaken the entire world. The lawlessness of law enforcement shatters every myth of democratic standards and norms in India.

As one reads the sudden attacks on Muslim homes and business and sees the pictures of stacks of burnt corpses, a chill runs down the spine. Pakistanis in Pakistan and overseas are also shocked and dismayed at watching Muslims in India suffer once more at the hands of Hindu Indian fundamentalist. These genocide against minorities is nothing new in India or in Indian occupied areas, for example Kashmir.

Amnesty International has accused the Indian troops in Kashmir of gross human rights violations, genocide, torture, murder and rapes. In the present wave of riots, common man in India has joined in the attacks against Muslims. The identification of homes and businesses of Muslims is being done by their neighbors. This is perhaps the most frightening scenario for any member of a minority.

The destruction of Babri Mosque in Adhoya and subsequent anti-Muslim riots resulted in murder of over 3,000 Muslims. The Hindu Indian fundamentalists now want to build a Hindu temple in place of Babri Mosque. The construction of temple is to start on March 12, within 10 days. This is sure to heat up the violence against Muslims which has already spread to five states.

The nodding of police and government in response to attacks by Hindu Indians on Muslims shows full involvement of Indian government at every level in supporting and encouraging violence. One must not forget that the Chief Minister for Gujrat province is a prominent leader of Hindu fundamentalist party and has vowed to continue the plans of building Hindu Temple in place of Babri Mosque. Also, L.K. Advani, the Indian Home Minister, is the one who led the Hindu Indian mob to raze Babri Mosque. In this bleak situation no help from Indian government is expected in protecting the interests of Muslims in India.

This has led to vocal calls from Information Times, an American Media in Washington DC for breakup of India into smaller countries where minorities are in the government and are able to protect their rights. This idea of partition has again come up after 55 years because the underlying argument of 'Two-Nation Theory', which was basis of creation of Pakistan, a home and safe haven for Muslims is once again valid and applicable on India. However, this time around, rather than creation of disparity in countries, India is eight times bigger than Pakistan, creation of smaller countries of equal area and resources should be carved out of India.

In Pakistan as well as overseas, every Pakistani is praying for safety of fellow Muslims in India, and is thinking, "Thank God we have Pakistan" “Thank God for farsightedness of Iqbal and Jinnah for creating our homeland.”


The News International, Friday, March 08, 2002
Humbug of common culture

Masud Akhtar Shaikh

The writer is a retired Colonel and freelance columnist

For over a decade now, a segment of misinformed Pakistani intellectuals working under the evil influence of their Indian counterparts have been singing songs of a so-called common heritage and shared cultural values between Hindus and Muslims of the subcontinent. Some of them have been going to the extent of declaring the two-nation theory as a political ruse employed by the Muslim leaders who fought the battle for the establishment of a separate homeland for the Muslims of South Asia. There are others who have been unabashedly criticising the Quaid-i Azam and the creation of Pakistan, thus playing in the hands of the anti-Pakistan lobby in India. As far as India is concerned, it never sincerely accepted the two-nation theory even though it had agreed to partition, a scheme the very basis of which was that theory.

Soon after the dismemberment of Pakistan as a result of the Indian manoeuvres in 1971, India started claiming that the event had buried the two-nation theory forever. The primary objectives of this claim was:

*To convince the naive intellectuals of Pakistan that the partition of the subcontinent had been nothing more than a political blunder;

*To prepare the ground for weakening the bond of common religion that still held together the remaining federating units of Pakistan, with the ultimate aim of total disintegration of this country.

It was in order to achieve the above objective that a well-orchestrated Indian psychological offensive was launched against Pakistan subsequent to the tragic events of 1971, making maximum use of the fast-growing information technology and the electronic media. The task of the powerful Indian propaganda machinery has been made easy by the lukewarm response of the official information agencies of Pakistan, which do not have any well-planned strategy to effectively counter India's nefarious designs against this country. Whatever measures our official agencies adopt are defensive and apologetic in nature, instead of being at least as offensive and original as those employed by India. The degree to which many of the Pakistani intellectuals and members of the new generation of Pakistanis have been influenced by this sinister Indian assault proves its effectiveness.

A sad testimony to this effect is a book titled "Common Heritage" published in Pakistan by the Oxford University Press on the 50th anniversary of Pakistan's creation. It contains eight articles written by eminent Indian and Pakistani writers, all of them suffering from nostalgia common to the upper strata of society in both countries, reflecting the feelings of a generation of Pakistanis that has had only a superficial experience of the state of affairs in the subcontinent before partition. They have either not experienced the hatred that a common Hindu citizen nourishes against a common Muslim, or they have thought it more expedient to hide the true facts in order to demonstrate that they are quite liberal.

The latest outburst of Hindu hatred against the Muslims in the Indian state of Gujarat should be an eye opener for the so-called liberal Pakistani intellectuals who keep placating India by sacrificing the long-term interests of their own country. A large number of innocent Muslim men, women and children have been killed in cold blood; there are cases of entire families being roasted alive; properties and humble possessions of Muslim citizens have been destroyed; mosques have been desecrated and many burnt to ashes. And this is not the first time that the incorrigible Hindutva mentality of the fundamentalist Hindus has played havoc with hundreds of their Muslim fellow citizens. Holocausts similar to this latest carnage keep occurring every now and then despite the facade of common heritage and shared culture, which forms the main theme of the Indian propaganda designed to mislead the world in general and the naive Pakistanis in particular.

An orgy of even greater magnitude was silently witnessed by the world almost a decade ago when the 16th century Babri mosque was razed to the ground by the Hindu fundamentalists who are now bent upon building a temple at the site of the demolished mosque. The worst part of such tragedies is that both the Indian police and army personnel, mostly Hindus, watch as mere spectators the murder and burning of innocent Muslims, instead of protecting their lives and properties. On top of all this, when those indulging in murder and arson enjoy the support of the Indian government itself, there is no guaranty that such genocides of Indian Muslims will not occur again. If the genocide of Indian Muslims continues at such an alarmingly large scale, they may all seek security in their forced conversion to Hinduism or migrate from their homeland for good, leaving India as a purely Hindu state, free to keep shouting its pet slogan of secularism to befool the world.

As for the two-nation theory, it stands vindicated once again as a result of the Gujarat massacre. How can people belonging to two diametrically opposed religions like Islam and Hinduism have a common culture? Religion is one of the most important factors that shape the culture of any society. In this particular case, the language spoken by the Muslims is different from that spoken by the Hindus; the dress worn by a majority of members of both communities is different, and so are their eating habits. There is hardly anything common between their respective social structures and the ways of life. While Islam teaches equality among all human beings, irrespective of the colour of their skins, the race to which they belong or the professions they pursue, the Hindu society is based on a strict division of human beings into various classes determined on the basis of the accident of their birth, the lowest class being treated with maximum hatred by those belonging to the higher classes. Even in the matter of worship, while Muslims believe in one God, Hindus have a number of gods and goddesses represented by their statues. The religious differences between these two communities are illustrated further by the fact that while the Hindus worship the cow, the Muslims relish its meat, and this very fact has been the cause of hundreds of communal riots in India during the last one hundred years.

Then there is the inborn hatred that a majority of Hindus nourish against the Muslims of India and Pakistan. The extent of this revulsion can be judged from the fact that orthodox Hindus considered it sacrilege to allow a Muslim into their kitchen or to use a utensil previously used by a Muslim without washing it seven times. I remember before partition there used to be separate water points for the two communities at every railway platform throughout India. Hindu hawkers used to sell eatables for Hindus because the latter would never buy such stuff from a Muslim vendor. Similarly, in almost every town of India, there used to be separate localities inhabited exclusively either by Hindus or Muslims. A Muslim never felt secure living in a locality where a majority of residents was Hindu.

With such a wide gulf separating Hindus and Muslims of the subcontinent, the question of a common heritage or a shared culture between them just does not arise. Those who cite inter-marriages among Hindus and Muslims to prove that the members of these two communities can live together in harmony intentionally conceal the point that such cases have been very rare and hence they do not prove the point. Let us accept that for their peaceful coexistence, the two communities must change their frame of mind towards each other, rather than wilfully creating the false impression that the partition of India was unwarranted in view of common heritage between Hindus and Muslims of the region.


The Nation, April 11, 2002

Dr Farid A. Malik

Indian secularism stands exposed. It is the beginning of the end for the Indian Union. After Pakistan, the Sikhs in India have been struggling for Khalistan. Kashmiris are fighting a freedom war while there are several movements in the South. It is time to divide India along religious lines. Pakistan, Bangladesh, Kashmir, Khalistan and Hindustan will then be able to live in peace and harmony. Precious lives will be saved.

The Muslims being a minority ensured a fair and secular administration during their rule in India. Except for Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb hardly any Muslim ruler was ever blamed for forcing religious beliefs or laws. From 1526 when Babar established the Mughal Empire till 1857 when the British slaughtered the heirs and imprisoned the last emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar, India remained fair, open and secular. As a religion Hinduism originated and remained in India. Several religions were eliminated or contained in the sub-continent, prominent amongst them were, Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism, Shintoism. When Islam was being cornered the Muslims decided to create their own homeland. The Sikhs agreed to stay in the Indian Union on assurances of a secular state. A sizeable portion of Muslims also stayed behind. Kashmir was forcibly occupied in connivance with the Hindu ruler. Sheikh Abdullah, the Sher-e-Kashmir later repented his decision to become the first Prime Minister under Hindu rule.

India claims to be the largest democracy in the world. Elections are held regularly and transition of government is through ballot. Unfortunately the democratic process only functions in Hindu majority provinces as such it should be named the largest Hindu democracy on the globe. In Sikh dominated Punjab and Muslim majority Kashmir the Hindu controlled central government calls the shots. Even places of worship are desecrated.

The central government sent troops to capture the Golden Temple at Amritsar the holiest Sikh shrine. Instead of surrounding the holy place of the Sikhs the troops fired their way in. The Sikhs retaliated and the Indian Prime Minister was assassinated. In Kashmir several Sufi Shrines have been burnt namely, Hazrat Bal, Charar Sharif etc. Sheikh Abdullah, the first Prime Minister of Kashmir after 1947, was imprisoned for extended periods till he was made to compromise with the Hindu-run Central government. His son Farooq Abdullah is a puppet Chief Minister and remains unpopular in the state. There is a freedom struggle in Kashmir in which over 100,000 people have lost their lives.

Democracy in India is a farce. It should be termed for the Hindus, by the Hindus, of the Hindus. If the minorities in India are not a part of the democratic framework then they should be let off. In the 21st century the era of the empire is over. The Soviet Union was the last powerful empire to collapse. How can a weak Hindu empire survive?

With political parties like Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and leaders like Bal Thackery and A.K. Advani, India should declare itself the Ram Republic of Hindustan like the Jewish State of Israel. In fact the two states have a lot in common and are the best of friends. Israeli intelligence agency 'Mossad' regularly trains the Indian agency 'RAW'. Now that the world has recognised the need for a Palestinian State in Israel it should also establish the Kashmiri State in India/Hindustan.

The myopic Hindu approach is visibly evident in all areas. Even sports are a victim of this approach. The Hindu Government of India has not allowed its cricket and hockey teams to play against Pakistan.

A new so-called anti-terrorism law has been passed by the BJP-led Hindu parliament to further contain the minorities in India. There were voices within the house opposing the said bill as it has the potential of being misused. While laws are being framed against minorities no action has been taken against Hindu zealots. Imam Syed Ahmed Bukhari has demanded action against RSS (Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh), VHP (Vishwa Hindu Parishad), BD (Bajrang Dal). According to Imam Bukhari these hardline organisations threaten the unity and integrity of India. As prime minister of India Atal Behari Vajpayee must move against these fundamentalist organisations if he desires to keep the union together.

The two nation theory on the basis of which the Indian sub-continent was divided is very much relevant and alive today. The movement for a separate homeland for the Muslims started in UP with Aligarh as its focal point. It is time for another movement to be started at Aligarh. Both Pakistan and Bangladesh must lend full support to their brethren in India who helped in their freedom struggle.

In addition to Muslims and Sikhs, the Christians have also been a target of Hindu high handedness. It seems the minorities in India have no future. It is for the Indian government to decide whether to cleanse India of Hindu fundamentalism or divide the country. The 200 million Muslims cannot be driven out or subjugated. They can either live in a secular India as equal citizens or emerge as a third Muslim State in the Indian sub-continent. Force cannot keep India together any longer.

The Hindu dream of 'Akhand Bharat' is out of line with ground realities. Indira Gandhi as the strongest prime minister of India tried to convert this dream into reality. She created Bangladesh but it decided to maintain its identity outside the halo of 'Akhand Bharat.' She captured the Golden Temple to tame the Sikhs but the 'Khalistan' movement is still alive. As long as there is injustice and insecurity in India there can be no 'Akhand Bharat'.

Perhaps the Hindus in India want their own state a real 'Hindustan.' The transition to this Hindu land should not be at the cost of the Muslims, Sikhs and Christians who have been there for centuries. Let all religions live in peace in India in their own areas sharing a common heritage. Division of India seems viable and feasible.


Hindu Fundamentalism Index