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What Happened? 2014 Indian Elections | A Road Map for Indian Muslims

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India is Our Country

Winners are not those who don’t fall. Winners are those who get up the quickest. Not just get up – because everyone eventually gets up – but get up fast.

  1.  The first and foremost thing to do is to remind ourselves and others that we Muslims are the citizens of India – with one cardinal difference – our fathers chose to live here when they had the option to go to Pakistan. Others who live here had no option. We did and we chose to live in India. India is our country and we don’t need anyone’s permission to live here and neither do we need to prove our loyalty to anyone. India is our country – we live in it and for it and we will die in it and for it. Patriotism is loyalty to our nation, not loyalty to any political party. We are patriotic and nobody has the right to question our patriotism and we don’t have to defend it or to answer anyone who is ignorant enough to question it. This is our land, the Constitution of which guarantees us the same rights as every other citizen, irrespective of caste, creed, or religion. This is our land and our Constitution and we will defend it. We stand for India and against anyone who is an enemy of our country. This is my land – our land – the land of our forefathers and the land of our generations unborn, yet to come. It is from this mindset that we must work.
  1.  We have lived in this land from times immemorial. For the past 1389 years, as Muslims, from 625 AD (4 Hijri) when the first Arabs came to Kerala and locals accepted Islam. What ancient Muslim rulers did during their rule – both the good and bad is not the responsibility of those who are alive today. Neither is what happens or doesn’t happen in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, or any other so-called Muslim country.
  1.  What is relevant is our own history, where we fought the British on the frontline in 1857, in the Mopla Rebellion, and in the army of Tipu Sultan. Then we were at the forefront of the Independence movement where our leaders fought alongside their compatriots and were imprisoned and killed by the British Colonial power.
  1.  In modern India our Madrassa system educates more than 2 million children free of cost which costs the community Rs.12 billion per annum. There is no other community in India who spends this kind of money on educating its people, which is really the responsibility of the Government of India, as we are Indian citizens.

We are Indians and India is our concern. This is our reality and it does not change whoever comes to power.

For anyone who is interested in the welfare of this nation I must say that Indian Muslims are 20% of the population – a force to reckon with with respect to buying power, economic drive, and stability – if it is harnessed by investment in its development. But a drag threatening to drown the nation if it is discriminated against, oppressed, and driven to the wall. I don’t see anyone with any intelligence wanting to make enemies of 200 million of its own citizens. That would be suicidal.

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There are two possible scenarios that the BJP victory predicts:

  1.  That the BJP lives by its stated agenda of good governance, economic development, and eradicating corruption. In that case this portends good for the Muslims who can look forward to development programs and real upliftment from poverty and deprivation. For the nation it can only mean great benefit because economically empowering 200 million people is to empower the whole nation. We need to give the BJP the benefit of the doubt and take them at their word and wait to see if they live up to it. Logically, they should because they are certainly intelligent people. The future will tell.
  1.  The BJP brings out its earlier RSS inspired agenda of oppressing Muslims and using them as a scapegoat and allows our brigand businesses to have the field and make hay and more while the saffron sun shines. I don’t think I need to describe that scenario. Its results can only be imagined. The reality will be worse. In that case what will be, will be. Living in terror and expecting the worst makes no sense. Living with hope, does.

Irrespective of what the future unfolds, it is up to us to decide what we must do.

What Must We Indian Muslims do?

Resilience: Be resilient. Get up from the floor. Accept reality and take stock. The thing that distinguishes nations that endure is not bravery or strength, but resilience. It is the ability to simply stay in the race, no matter how many or how bad the knocks. 

There are three steps to resilience:

  1.  Face the brutal facts but don’t lose hope
  2.  Make sense of what is happening
  3.  Take hard decisions to ensure the future

Face the Brutal Facts: So what are the brutal facts with respect to the political history of Muslims in post-independence India?

India2

To put it simply – deteriorating quality of leadership. We have been on a slide and the end is not in sight yet. No vision, strategy, unity or discipline. Just bravado and loud-mouthed speeches. Our leaders are true to form with the kind of mercenary, corrupt leadership that we have been plagued with in India. Our leaders are as corrupt and mercenary as anyone else, with absolutely nothing to distinguish them as Muslims. Islam is not a differentiator except as a convenient tool for them to whip up emotions to serve their own short-sighted political agendas. Our leaders are politicians in the worst sense of the term and not the statesmen that we need.

Congress, in one form or another, has ruled this country since independence except for one term when the BJP (NDA) occupied the throne of Delhi. In that long period of over 5 decades, every atrocity that was done to Muslims, from the demolishing of the Babari Masjid, to the so-called Bombay pogrom, Bhagalpur pogrom, Makkah Masjid blasts, the latest pogrom in Muzzafernagar, and a million others – as well as the gross neglect of and discrimination against Muslims, all happened under Congress rule at the center. The BJP, not to be left behind, allowed the Gujarat pogrom to take place during their watch. Then came 10 years of Congress rule during which the plight of the living was a reflection of the savagery that marked the death of their families. Nobody was brought to justice. The Congress did nothing to right the wrongs of the BJP much less its own.

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42 Comments

42 Comments

  1. Edward Kefas

    May 19, 2014 at 2:43 PM

    It is the scholars sadly who have contributed to the flames of sectarianism and ethno-nationalism which have fractured the Islamic civilization and allowed it to fall to european and hindu conquest.

    Only new movements like al Maghrib and Mishkah University can promote Islamic unity, but they have not yet it seems.

    The geography of the once Islamic civilization is encircled:

    Narendra Modi keen to deepen ties with Israel: Benjamin Netanyahu
    http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/politics-and-nation/narendra-modi-keen-to-deepen-ties-with-israel-benjamin-netanyahu/articleshow/35311029.cms

  2. muslima

    May 19, 2014 at 3:29 PM

    JazaKhAllahKheir for your indepth analysis.

  3. NTP

    May 19, 2014 at 5:09 PM

    Dear Sir,
    You have synthesized a fair analysis. However, let us rise above religions, we do not need a hindu, a muslim, a sikh, and a christian representative of India to the UN. What we need is, and I think you agree: modern education, grooming and empowerment of modern thinking people on the whole. We need to think in terms of human beings, in terms of progress, in terms of growth for all; not just in terms of a community in particular.
    When developed and an educated society, everyone can follow their own faith, religion, beliefs in the privacy of their own homes. With equal respect for the other, be it religion, faith, belief system, gender, color, cast and creed. Communal carnage happens in the poorest of the poor neighbourhoods and communities. It also happens, granted, at the hand of insane zealots like Hitler, or in modern times in Sarajevo, Serbia Herzegovina, in Africa, in Seria; however again and again propelled by a disbalance in wealth, colored unmistakably by religion.
    I think we all should aspire to a better economic future, a better informed and educated tomorrow and a better appreciation for each other. There is no doubt in my mind that India is your home as much as it is mine; you are as loyal or more as I; and you have equally as deep roots if not deeper, and appreciation for your motherland as I. You and I are Indians. Therefore, let us work towards and hope for a unified today; not defined by narrow definitions, not delineated by religion, not circumspect by ethnic identities; and certainly not daunted by sceptical fools who do not know what they are doing and what they have done.
    Let us raise fair leaders of tomorrow.

    • Sihtric Anilla

      May 20, 2014 at 6:32 PM

      Amen. You said it best. Religion is an extremely private matter. I’m almost shocked how people display it in public. Most of our present day problems would just fizzle when this genie is kept indoors. It’s an extension of the church-state separation. I’m not interested in your religion and you shouldn’t be in mine. Peace out.

    • I.S.M. Habibullah (@Fire_flash_ex)

      May 31, 2014 at 6:58 AM

      How long would the mankind need to realize that there is the one, the almighty, to whom all of us are indebted.

      And as far as practice of religion is concerned, would you agree with Druidism? It’s high time you spent your good will to dedicate your time in knowing the religions in better.

      And you would certainly find the right one if your eyes are open for verily the truth and the falsehood are very distinct and clear.

  4. sadiq

    May 19, 2014 at 5:40 PM

    if Mukthar Ansari is a criminal, so is Narendra Modi far worse then Mukthar…

  5. Venkat

    May 20, 2014 at 1:12 AM

    As I Hindu who grew with numerous Muslim friends I applaud general sentiment of this article. Never been a fan of Gandhis. Unfortunately they seem to be default place holder for secular forces. Unless people organize and embrace live and let live philosophy we will living in the shadow of someone like Modi.

  6. Shaheen

    May 20, 2014 at 3:11 AM

    Today’s times are tough for our young generation. Facts are manipulated in the name of culture, religion, power, existence and personal gains. So be aware and reasonable. Get authentic sources and facts. Our leaders are corrupt because we are corrupt.

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  8. Sue

    May 20, 2014 at 2:06 PM

    If that doesn’t show that Muslims voted for the BJP then what else does it show?

    Maybe that many Muslims didnt turn up and failed to vote sufficiently for an alternative.
    Also be caustious about : ‘Congratulations to the Muslims for being completely blind’
    While it may be true for some, many robably see something else and many face serious pressures to vote for a particular party or person and can very difficultly do otherwise. And dont come and spout about the secrecy of the ballot this doesnot mean much in many countries of the world

    On the whole a beautiful peice with balance views but just want to make sure you understand that sometimes things run deeper than what it appears on the surface and not all is what it seems.

  9. Major Razor

    May 20, 2014 at 4:12 PM

    I’ll follow the author’s example and start by offering my congratulations. Well done on this neatly packaged and well-articulated piece. It’s refreshing to hear a response from the anti-BJP confederacy that isn’t simmering with passive-aggressive neuroses such as the highly publicized article by Gopalkrishna Gandhi. This author clearly has a greater reign of his emotions than that descendant of Mahatma Gandhi.

    Onto the substance…

    I agree with several of the points made here including the need for the Muslim Indian for greater investment in the long-term well-being of his community. However, I can’t help but roll my eyes at the victim complex and sly contradictions with which this article is dripping. We are simultaneously asked to forget and forgive what the Islamic invaders did to India AND feel guilty about the riots visited upon the Muslim community. “Now wait a minute,” I imagine the author saying. “Muhammad of Ghor’s rape and plunder of Hindu civilization and the precedent he set for countless Islamic warlords was eons ago. The UP riots happened just last year. So let’s stay relevant here.” But I am staying relevant here. The psyche of the Indian Hindu wasn’t reset in 1947. The long history of subjugation wasn’t wiped out from our collective consciousness on Midnight August 15th, 1947. The referendum against Congress and it’s vote-bank politics was in part a pro-development exercise but on a more visceral level it was an impulse to understand our lost identity as Hindu Indians. And yet the beneficiaries of the Modi wave aren’t Hindus alone (as much as the author would like you to believe) – it is all Indians. A more secure and well-represented Hindu populace is a less frustrated and indignant Hindu populace. I hope the author and the Muslims he claims to represent would prefer the former, for all our sakes.

    • Major Razor

      May 20, 2014 at 6:13 PM

      Thanks, Sunil.

      I agree with your sentiments. We are Hindus today because of the bravery and integrity of our ancestors in the face of bloodthirsty proselytizers. Moreover, we did not encroach on the proud civilizations of Persia and Europe to spread our faith by the sword. I do not believe that is the Hindu way. In fact, the dissemination of a religion by violent means demonstrates its inherent insecurities.

      As for the sporadic and infrequent displays of vengeance on the part of some Hindus in recent times, the best way I can explain it is the way in which a biological organism’s antibodies fight back against foreign pathogens. It’s a hard-wired and utterly understandable urge towards self-preservation, common to all communities. In fact, if someone wanted to demolish the Kabba in Mecca and build a Church or Synagogue over it, an instant firestorm of dissent would erupt in the Islamic world, hundred times as strident as the protests that ultimately brought down the Babri Masjid in Ayodhya.

      Any way, I have a feeling that if I waited for the author of the original article to enlighten his outlook and apologize on behalf of Indian muslims, whom he ostensibly represents, for what their fascistic forebears have done to Mother India, I might be waiting indefinitely… But I do enjoy being pleasantly surprised :)

      Razor

      P.S. *”…greater command of his emotions” in my first comment.

      • Amad

        May 21, 2014 at 6:41 AM

        Wow. This comment is reflection of a sick mentality. Dismissing violence based on a sick biological example is really amazing.

        I could say the Al-Qaeda types use this analogy… after all Muslims are the biggest victims of wars and terrorism— consider all the countries being invaded by the West and how Islamists who won democratic elections are being removed out of power extrajudicially. So really Al-Qaeda could say that the terrorism conducted by them is a biological anti-bodies in the nations invaded.

        All extremists are just cut from the same cloth… hindu, jewish, buddhist, muslim…. all sickos.

      • Arif

        May 21, 2014 at 11:31 AM

        First of all i do not undestand what you mean by “we”. There were only different small kingdoms fighting each other in the past. Haven’t you heard about ashwamegha yagya… And how the Hindu kings used it to expand their dominion and impose war on the states who refuse to subjugate. People like you convenient forget these things.

        India was united only during the time of Ashoka, Mughals and British. And of these, mughals were the ones to rule for the longest period. And Indians must be thankful to them.. For they not only strengthened the country as a whole but immensely contributed in bringing common civic sense , good echoes and culture in the country.

        People like you always harp on the looters with Muslim names who attacked Hindu kingdoms.. and disregard the fact that even the Mughal empire has been under constant attack from such looters and attackers, some of which were also muslims e.g. Ahmad shah abdali for instance…

        Unless you have conciously chosen to stick with this selective amnesia, I urge you to read an unbiased history of india again and clear your mind.

        • Major Razor

          May 21, 2014 at 12:15 PM

          Arif,

          So? There were small kingdoms fighting within most civilizations in human history. For instance, in Western civilization, the Romans fought the Germanic tribes, the British fought Napolean’s French army, the Norwegians who were previously dominated by Danish and Swedish interests found won their own Independence eventually and so forth. That is pretty common. If you grew up in a big family you know not everyone gets along all the time. However, when the Mohammedans tried to spread Islam in the West, European nations joined forces to resist the foreign proselytizers. They were successful. Unfortunately, the Hindu kingdoms were not. However, that does not mean we should not aspire for the reunification of Hindu civilization. That is a worthy goal. This last general election was a step in the right direction. The divide and rule politics of the Mughals, the British Empire and the Congress was rejected and for the first time Hindus from various castes came together to vote for Modi. This is a healthy sign for our ancient civilization. If I were you, I’d put away that anti-Hindu scowl from your face, accept your mistakes and join us as partners in the great adventure that is ahead of us as Indians.

          Razor

          P.S. Here’s hoping this comment doesn’t also get thrown in limbo/deleted by the moderator.

          • Arif

            May 26, 2014 at 9:35 PM

            I wonder how you guys have time to just continuously sit online and keep commenting …

            Anyways, Just because i debunked your theory of “Hindus not attacking any one”, I become “anti-hindu” ? . That’s the crux of the problem with your thought process… If someone does not agree to you, he/she immediately becomes anti-hindu and anti-india …

            Your history claims are at best laughable.. I know your ilk have strong problems with the current documented history. You guys don’t even accept the indian history ..

            There may have been some muslim rulers who have done injustices … but why I or any other general muslim needs to apologize for them .. This is non sense. If you want an apology , go back in time and ask that muslim ruler if you can…

            Muslims will always be a positive force for the nation. Always remember that it was muslim rulers who united india and gave its residents (including you and me) a country which we associate ourselves as indians.

        • ZAI

          June 1, 2014 at 3:35 AM

          ” even the Mughal empire has been under constant attack from such looters and attackers, some of which were also muslims e.g. Ahmad shah abdali for instance…”

          Brother,
          To us Afghans the Mughals following Akbar were despotic looters and occupiers, and Ahmad Shah Abdali freed us from their rule as well as later cementing independence from Iran following the death of Nadir Shah. So if you say Abdali was a looter and attacker then must also be acknowledged that Mughals were seen that way by others by the same standard. Mughal rule was unwelcome in both Afghanistan and Pashtunkhwa post-Akbar…please see poetry of Khushal Khan Khattak for examples of anti-Mughal sentiment among Pashtuns.

          These things are complicated. I agree Abdali visited a lot of wrong on people east of Indus…but by the same degree Mughals and Sikh rulers did the same in the other direction. Things are not so stark…and is perfect example of Br. Amad and also your own advice to keep these things in the past, because rehashing them causes unnecessary conflict. Aside from few cases like Hitler who were pure evil, it is complicated since people have both their praise worthy aspects and also their flaws. All are human.

  10. interested

    May 20, 2014 at 4:59 PM

    Overall, a very interesting, balanced and enjoyable piece. As a non-religious hindu Indian living in the USA, I really wanted to understand how the average Indian muslims feel about this, and this has given me a good view.

    I applaud that you think you are Indians first. I agree with you that the muslim forefathers made a decision, a choice to stay in India and you don’t have to prove your loyalty to anyone. And that is true – the hindus had no choice, but the muslims did and they chose India.

    That said, I too rolled my eyes at the victim complex. Now try to think about how average hindus feel.

    The whole world is scared of fundamentalist muslims (whether you want to accept it or not). There seems to be a more disproportionate number of angry muslims than others (in today’s context. Christianity has its brutal past). We see how other countries that are ruled by muslim law limit education and human rights to women. As a woman, I am afraid of increasing influence of islam in the public sphere in my country, if indeed the religion fundamentally dictates that women have limited rights, can get married as a child and is not as worthy as a man. The prophet married a child, but can we put that aside and not take it too literally as it was the product of times and not something that can be followed by men today?

    I have many muslim friends who I went to school and college with and they are not scary. However, where is the condemnation when so many atrocities in the world happens in the name of Islam? You mention that the Indian muslims need not worry or associate or be responsible for the Saudi muslims. But does that mean you disagree with their views? Are you okay with following the religion at home and not let it be a part of the law and civic life?

    Are Indian muslims ready to accept that all Indians should be treated equal irrespective of caste, religion or gender? Are they okay with the uniform civil code where Sharia law will not be given any standing in a court of law? There will be no “Hindu marriage act” and “muslim marriage act”? Muslim men cannot behave differently from Hindu men and the men cannot have different divorce or inheritance laws from men (whatever religion)?

    Or do you demand that islam should be given special privileges because that is freedom of religion? And remember, it is not one person, it is the entire community. At what point will a muslim or a hindu take to the streets in a spree of revenge and murder (like what happened at Gujarat?). That can never happen in a civilized society irrespective of the religion.

    What’s missing in this piece is some self reflection of what the community is doing wrong and how it can improve trust in the eyes of the citizenry. Every group should do this, but the minorities especially so, since it affects them directly. The Saudi and other men are not known for peace. But why can’t the Indian muslims strive for peace?

    I am totally against the RSS/Hindutva/rath yatra spectacles. I could be biased, but that was created to stand up for some of the other total lack of intolerance. Every group should self examine and steer away from violence and try to communicate through dialogue. And education is the only thing that will move the needle in that area.

    • Major Razor

      May 20, 2014 at 7:52 PM

      Madam,

      You are correct in criticizing Islam’s contempt for the female sex. The appalling moral bankruptcy of Sharia makes it unsuited for civilized nations. Unfortunately, the so-called secularist (but not really) Congress that created the tradition of winning elections based on vote banks clearly doesn’t care about the plight of women. Their failure to strip away special rights from Indian muslims and enforce a uniform civil code makes India look more backward than Egypt and Turkey – muslim-majority countries where Islamic polygamy is outlawed.

      One other thing, I wouldn’t be so quick to give a pass to the ancestors of Indian Muslims who “decided” to stay in India. While it is true that some Muslims remained in India out of sense of anti-separatism and served the nation with patriotic fervor such as Maulana Azad, many others happened to not end up in West and East Pakistan for logistical and financial reasons, especially those located in the heartland of India. This less talked about aspect of the history of Indian partition is still felt today. For instance, note the celebratory mood in Muslim neighborhoods in India when Pakistan defeats India in international cricket. These anti-Indian ghettos are colloquially called ‘chota pakistan’ not without reason.

      Razor

      • Mahmud

        May 20, 2014 at 9:05 PM

        Major

        The Muslims of today were not responsible for killing your ancestors. They are innocent and had nothing to do with it. Justifying your lack of sympathy towards Muslim victims is like me justifying my lack of sympathy for Hindu girls forced into marriage with Muslims in Pakistan because some Hindu men raped Muslim women in India.

        Those Muslim women who are raped in India have as much right to my sympathy as the Hindu girls who are forcibly married(i.e. raped) in Pakistan.

        I would be utterly sick and cruel if I couldn’t afford sympathy to them based on what their brethren have done to my women.

      • Mahmud

        May 20, 2014 at 9:14 PM

        The appalling moral bankruptcy of the Hindu caste system makes it unpalatable for any society.

        • Major Razor

          May 21, 2014 at 10:17 AM

          Mahmud,

          You speak as if I am asking for the slaughter of Muslims living in India and the termination of your culture. That is not my intention. In fact, my value system abhors ethnic violence. You either are pretending to miss my point intentionally or you really are ignorant.

          We would simply like you to acknowledge that the friction that presently exists between our communities did not arise ex nihilo, did not fall from the sky. There’s a long history behind the conflict and a failure by your community to acknowledge that history fans the flames of that conflict. Our request is you affirm your community’s role in the historical abuse of Mother India. This is a simple request and to deny it is provocative. Just as to deny the Shoah or Holocaust is provocative to Jews.

          As for the caste system, even the Congress-hero, Jawaharlal Nehru praised the caste system in his universally celebrated book ‘The Discovery of India’. Among other things, he argues that the caste system was devised to organize society by trade in order to increase its efficiency – what economists calls the division of labor – and it worked very well for its time. Try to educate yourself before you make these fashionable and ultimately hollow attacks on Indian culture.

          Unless you begin constructive dialogue, there will be no progress. You can start by some collective self-reflection.

          Razor

          • Amad

            May 21, 2014 at 2:16 PM

            Wow “Razor” is razor-sharp in his razism. He even defends the caste-system that subjugates people to a lifetime of a certain stature based on which belly they were born in. These comments have been really eye-opening and go a long way in showing how dangerous this hindu extremist narrative is becoming.

      • interested

        May 20, 2014 at 11:30 PM

        I really don’t want to get into Hindu vs Muslim argument here. Hindus are not great in treating women right, For that matter, women have been treated badly throughout history by all religions. Manu Neeti, Sati, inauspicious widows, dowry – the hindu list goes on. And also, we have no control over where and when we are born. So, I don’t think we need to heap the entire responsibility (or pride) on the current living beings for the deeds of ancestors.

        My point is though, if you want equality, everything is equal. You cannot have special reservations, special interpretation of the law etc. You can also not get angry when you perceive any slight against you, but be fine and in fact be the cause of slighting others.

        A secular country means the laws are not based on your religion, it is based on the constitution. Otherwise, there is no sense in calling us Indians when we get different rewards and punishments based on whether I am muslim or Hindu, man or woman.

        Cultural change will take generations. But at least in common public sphere, under the eyes of the law, we should all be the same. If suggesting that is ill treating the minorities, then we have a fundamental difference. I argue that the parties like Congress who play the divide and conquer game are unsecular and BJP which talks about uniform civil code is more secular.

    • Amad

      May 21, 2014 at 6:29 AM

      “However, where is the condemnation when so many atrocities in the world happens in the name of Islam?”

      Unfortunately this is the same trope raised by Western Islamophobes. Just google “Muslims condemn terrorism” and you can spare us this oft-repeated stereotype.

      • interested

        May 21, 2014 at 5:52 PM

        Maybe. I could be wrong because I’ve never seen or heard major condemnation. I apologize if I was just not aware of it. The fact is I am a person who goes out and seeks opinion, and I have not heard much of it. And that is a PR problem.

        With lack of this information, it is hard for Hindus to understand where Indian muslims stand with respect to rest of the world. Are they more milder, moderate or extreme?

        It seems that while a constitution has a clear wording and is interpreted by supreme court and can be amended when times change, something like religious law is filled with dogma, is subject to vast interpretation depending on who reads it and how it benefits them, does not have enough representation (women cannot be part of the judges) and there is no recourse.

        Without going on with empty back and forth, here is my real question. I have asked it many times, but no one has responded. Please answer this question.

        How do Indian muslims feel about a uniform civil code where there is no Sharia law interpretation at all? Is that acceptable to them or not?

        • Amad

          May 22, 2014 at 10:24 AM

          It is a PR problem— Muslims do have a long way to go in effective PR. But it is also a media problem. When only the negative things are considered newsworthy, then a condemnation is not even reported…

          But really in this age, one just has to google “muslims condemn terrorism” and you will get a million links… Start with this http://www.muhajabah.com/otherscondemn.php

          Now I don’t know about law specifics special to Muslims or other minorities in India. I do know that in the West, there are permissions to for minorities to engage in their own contracts. For example in financial or marital contracts— Muslims could do it under Islamic laws. I would also say that the situation of Muslims in India is unique in that the numbers are so large. So you have to find ways that Muslims can do their own thing, as long as it does not harm the rest of the population. Freedom of religion is a hall-mark of any democratic society.

          In any case, I would let an Indian Muslim speak on this issue due to my own lack of knowledge in the area.

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  12. Prashanth Yeri

    May 21, 2014 at 2:36 AM

    Very well balanced article. Religion is a private matter, which has unfortunately been brought out into political discourse by successive governments and parties to further their own cause and not of the society at large.

    The key for any community – majority or minority / rich or poor is too pull itself up by its bootstraps and get an education for its young. As we know, there are enough schools and colleges in this country where good education is available for deserving students. The minute one is educated, the focus will shift to leading a good life, in turn helping society at large, making religion a private affair.

  13. Major Razor

    May 21, 2014 at 11:23 AM

    The moderator of this article has answered my criticisms of Islam with the typically fascistic response of censorship. They did that when Salman Rushdie published ‘The Satanic Verses’ , they did that after the innocuous Danish cartoons were printed and they are doing that here on muslimmatters.org. I gave the author a choice to either apologize or at least engage in debate (I love being proven wrong and learning new things) but he has chosen to take the cowardly route of shunning self-reflection and deleting my comments. Bravo. You inadvertently helped me by demonstrating my theses.

    • Umm ZAKAriyya

      May 21, 2014 at 1:08 PM

      Your comments still here .

      If your comments were deleted , you must have violated their policy . State your views without being disrespectful to avoid it being deleted .

      • Major Razor

        May 21, 2014 at 3:30 PM

        The removed were not so different than any that remain. Anyway, hate speech or “trolling” is not something I’m interested in or have time for. I wanted to offer an alternative perspective to the Indian Muslim problem and I believe I’ve done that with sufficient respect. Perhaps the solution is to not retreat into your turtle shell but to grow thicker skin and face the music. We can all get along only if there is constructive dialogue. I am willing to hear your side and change my views if your arguments are persuasive. However, all that is impossible if making any criticism is quickly labeled spewing hatred. That’s the sort of thing that makes our side grow weary of waiting for dialogue and instead go looking for solutions alone…

        Finally, I concede that Amad is right in suggesting that this isn’t a public forum and that you have complete freedom to censor/ban me here. I just doubt that would accomplish much.

        • Amad

          May 21, 2014 at 4:08 PM

          You will find plenty of criticism here, which does not match your hate-speech.

          Do some soul-searching. Compare what I wrote, with respect and humility, against what you wrote. I have dealt with a lot of Muslim extremists, and really, you come off sounding just like them. You are not going to get anywhere with this kind of chip on your shoulder. Just as you have pride in your heritage, Muslims have pride in their heritage. And when you come here trying to “set matters right”, it reeks of arrogance and no one likes arrogance. If you think anyone would change or come to terms with you on “your terms”, then you are gravely mistaken. Listen and you will be listened to. That’s how discussions happen.

          • Major Razor

            May 21, 2014 at 4:38 PM

            With respect, in light of the recent victories of my movement, I believe my need for soul-searching is much less urgent right now than yours is. We have been soul-searching for a long time and it seems we have emerged from the fog of confusion and despair created by anti-Hindu interests, ranging from the terror networks in Pakistan to the misguided and epicene leadership of Congress. We have emerged with an absolute majority, a powerful mandate handed to us by the people of India.

            Secondly, I have yet to encounter a single major rebuttal of any of the points I made. Just because certain historical facts make you uncomfortable does not mean they are hate speech.

            Your definition of a discussion is that I quietly absorb these lengthy blogs, listen to you pontificate and not utter a single dissenting opinion. Call me arrogant but I don’t share that definition.

          • Amad

            May 22, 2014 at 10:16 AM

            I don’t know if I find your comment amusing or naive or both. “Your team” just recently won. They won the battle of votes, but will they win the battle of hearts and minds?

            As for soul-searching, no doubt Muslims have to do a lot of it, as the other article on Indian elections by Shaykh Mirza Baig illustrated. But soul-searching is not an activity only for the non-victorious, victors need it as much.

            More importantly, history has shown many great nations and great leaders have come and gone. There was a lot of hope for Obama yet he failed miserably as a leader and I was one of his huge supporters. The wise learn to take victories in stride, they don’t trample over the losers, because it is possible the losers will become your masters next time…

    • Amad

      May 21, 2014 at 2:10 PM

      And you have demonstrated that you have not properly read our blog rules and regulations for a respectful decorum.

      This is our blog, not your free space to spew hatred. Thanks for your understanding.

  14. Pips

    May 22, 2014 at 1:53 AM

    Let this time be a new begining – a re run of post August 1947, a perfect time to retrospect and start things afresh the way they should have been.

  15. M

    May 22, 2014 at 8:06 AM

    “We forget and ignore that the decisions of Allāh subḥānahu wa ta’āla (glorified and exalted be He) are based on our actions.”

    I agree, I believe that the problem in South Asian Countries is not a political, but a social one. We have all the laws available but there is a question of implementing them. Because most people believe it is acceptable to take money from a person and let them jump the line, so we can use the money to jump the line ourselves.

    Let’s assume that we get honest leaders, but are we ready to stop lying, and cheating, and assuming that certain family names are better than the others? Will we stop treating the poor with disrespect because they have less money then we do? Are we ready to stop oppressing the the weak in our households, neighbourhoods and our community?

  16. ajaz

    May 24, 2014 at 6:08 PM

    Well written article. Thanks for showing us the way forward.

  17. Appan Varma

    May 28, 2014 at 5:39 AM

    COME TO KERALA and see how we Hindus , xians and Muslims live TOGETHER and how advanced is the muslim community over the hindus in education ( girls mainly as boys tend to move to Gulf , saudi etc early) and financially. It is the good action of the rulers of the state ( all anti hindu effectively in one sense – the communists , the Muslim League and xian kerala congress rules the state) that has helped this to be acvhieved

  18. Wanderer19 (@RidzuanArabi)

    May 29, 2014 at 7:05 PM

    modi or anybody, they are all the same and don’t make any differences for Muslims. Even Obama can’t do anything that worthy of mention for Muslim people or country. I just hope and prays that no more mosque demolished, no more mass killing and none of our sisters raped or any of our children’s burned alive. I’m afraid of the facts that the history might repeats itself sometimes. Be prepared for the worse that might or might not happen and hold steadfast to the rope of Allah (self-note and reminder to myself and the others). No matter what, Palestine/Syria/Libya/Egypt/Afghan (the list goes on and on and on) and all the Muslims around the world will be in my hearts and prayers. Jum’ah Mubarak and Salam Jumaat.

  19. Salahuddin Mohamed

    June 4, 2014 at 2:39 AM

    I CAN COME TO A CONCLUSION AFTER GOING THROUGH ALL THE COMMENTS ONE GROUP ANTI MUSLUM.ANOTHER GROUP ANTI HINDU THIRD GROUPAWAY FROM BOTH GROUPS.AS A MUSLIM IT IS OUR COUNTRY.THE FORE FATHERS HAVE DONE A GREAT BLUNDER IN DIVIDING THIS GREAT COUNTRY ON THE BASIS OF RELIGION. IN INDEPENDENT INDIA I ENJOYED AND CONTRIBUTED ENOUGH TO THIS COUNTRY.I AM MORE WORRIED ABOUT YOUNGER GENERATION.TO COME UP IN LIFE MUSLIMS SHOULD CONCENTRATE IN EDUCATION BOTH WORLDLY AND RELIGIOUS EDUCATION.THEN ONLY THEY CAN SHINE.FREE EDUCATION SHOULD BE GIVEN.ISLAM IS PEACE LOVING AND IS NOT A RELIGION FOR ONE COMMUNITY IT IS FOR THE WHOLE WORLD.ISLAM IS THE FIRST AND LAST PHILOSOPHYON THE EARTH.OTHER 99 PHILOSOPHYS ADDED UP.THE FIRST MAN ADAM LANDED ONLY IN OUR COUNTRY.MANY YEARS AGO CEYLON WAS PART OF INDIA.IN CEYLON YOU CAN SEE MOUNT ADAM.ADAM WAS PREACHING ISLAM ONLY.IN CONCLUSSION BJP ALREADY HAD TO BLACK SPOTS 1 1992 DEMOLISION OF BABRI MASJID.2.2002 GUJARATH RIOT.MR MODI SHOULD NOT DESTROY SECULAR FABRICS OF THIS COUNTRY.IF TOUCHES RAM TEMPLE,UNIFORM CIVIL LAW AND 370 HE WILL BE IN SOUP.WE CAN JUDGE HIS GOVERNMENT AFTER 365 DAYS.IN THIS JUNCTURE MUSLIM SHOULD BUILD UP BENOVALENT LEADER.ALL THE BEST FOR THE MODI GOVERNMENT

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