Recently, an article titled ‘Sonia, sadly’ written by ‘activist’ Harsh Mander was shared by Pakistani politician Imran Khan with a comment thanking Jinnah. In the article, the activist Harsh Mander writes about the ‘political marginalisation’ of Muslims. This is strikingly similar to one of the key reasons cited by Jinnah for a separate country. This attracted the attention of Twitter users. Some of them tacitly approved the comment, while others opposed it.
Why we should be thankful to Quaid-i-Azam and value Pakistan, realising how lucky we are. https://t.co/w9JhYta39B
— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) March 17, 2018
The story of partition has been brushed under the carpet in India’s discourse. India has never made attempts to highlight the villain that Jinnah was in the history of the subcontinent. Jinnah’s two nation theory argued that Hindus and Muslims were two separate nations and hence both had to have a separate country after British left India. The Congress party disagreed with the theory though it accepted a partition of the subcontinent. Pakistan became an Islamic state and India a secular state.
Post partition, one would have believed that Muslims would integrate into Indian society, accept common laws and place their Indian identity above their religious identity. The process has been stymied by the community’s staunch adherence to personal laws and opposition to the national song ‘Vande Mataram’. In spite of this, the participation of Indian Muslims in elections and all other fields of the society has been active and constructive in most cases. India’s most loved President-Dr APJ Abdul Kalam was elected by a BJP led alliance. India’s favourite music composer is AR Rahman. One can go on listing prominent Muslim figures in all fields.
Instead of forging unity over the decades, secular parties in India went ahead with their appeasement policies for the sake of garnering votes. They not only compromised principles of fairness but also went on to shed tears for terrorists. These secularists are blocking reasonable reform in Muslim society like Triple Talaq bill. Their attempts to bury the demand for a Ram Temple are also well known. The fall of ‘secular’ parties has been so drastic, that a former president of Congress had to admit that her party was now perceived as a Muslim party because of BJP.
This comment has led to deep sorrow among secular-liberal ecosystem as they see their career prospects in ‘activism’ and anti-Hindu bashing declining in future. Thus they are now writing obituaries to the ideals that had once found credence in the corridors of power. Mander, in his article, writes (emphasis added) :
Muslims are today’s castaways, political orphans with no home, for virtually every political party. This despite India being home to a tenth of the world’s Muslims, around 180 million people, making it the largest Muslim country after Indonesia and Pakistan. There has never been a harder time to be a Muslim in India, not since the stormy months that followed India’s Partition.
The phrase ‘largest Muslim country‘ used by Mander underlines the mindset of the secular liberal ecosystem. It is a Freudian slip that shows that it is people Mander who believe in the two-nation theory. For them, any strategy to play the victim or attack RSS is valid, even if it jeopardises the national identity and unity of India.
Mander writes :
“Open expression of hatred and bigotry against Muslims have become a new normal, from schools to universities, workplaces to living rooms, internet to political rallies. Even worse, they’re forced to live with the everyday fear of hate violence.”
Mandar makes sweeping generalizations about hatred and bigotry against Muslims, while the same about Hindus can be argued equally emphatically. An example can be cited of the ‘secular’ Hartosh Singh Bal who wanted Brahmins to be targeted by Islamist mobs in Kashmir and the state to not waste resources on their protection.
Or how the secular motivated campaign like #NotInMyName turned severely anti-Hindu. When a Hindu boy is brutally murdered, the secular Karnataka government called it a “normal death”, and none seemed to bat an eye. Heck, even speaking for Hindu riot victims in Bangladesh was called “Hindu Nationalism” in the most derogatory fashion.
Mander provides no data for violence, and any attempt to provide data has been found to be manipulated, partisan or simply fraudulent. Take the ‘HT Hate Tracker for example’. We had demonstrated earlier how the tool was openly bigoted and biased considering Hate crimes against people belonging to certain political or religious inclination were conveniently ignored, and so are crimes perpetrated by people belonging to certain political or religious ideology. It was even pointed out that Hate Tracker 13 out of 15 Muslim-on-Dalit hate crimes basically shielding Muslim perpetrators.
Or how can we forget the man who spread fake gau-rakshak attack story and later admitted he lied because he hates Hindus? How can we forget how his story was lapped up by the secular-liberal ecosystem simply because it painted Hindus in bad light, no questions asked?
He sees Sonia Gandhi’s comment on ‘Muslim party’ as a final nail in the coffin of appeasement politics. He is indirectly sending an SOS to political parties not to ditch appeasement politics. He writes :
But now it is not just the BJP that shuns Muslims. Most political parties are accepting the premise that the majority Hindu vote will sour if a party is seen to be close to Muslims. In her 19 years of leadership of the Congress, Sonia Gandhi never faltered in her secular convictions. But when even she declared recently that the Congress suffered because the BJP persuaded people that it was a Muslim party, many Muslims felt their expulsion to the political wilderness was complete. [..]
Minorities have become “a taboo for the big parties” which seek to “dissociate with any step that can come across as minority appeasement”. This “shows us what is in store in the future”. It is for Hindus to decide now, he believes, “whether they want India to become a Hindu Rashtra or remain secular”.
This commentary makes one wonder if secular intellectuals are on their way to create a separate nation of ‘Hindus’ and ‘Muslims’ in India using the strategy of Jinnah in 1940s. While the BJP and PM reiterate the ideology of Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas, these activists go around peddling the story of ‘political isolation’ in Muslim community. BJP has ensured that its policies are not meant for any religion. It has supported Muslim women in their fight against Triple Talaq. The theory of political isolation is a figment of Harsh Mander’s imagination, which was, in turn, picked up by Pakistan to prop itself up and undermine India. In effect, Mander also gave an excuse to Pakistan to whitewash how terribly they treat the Hindu minority there. The comparison is unthinkable, but Mander’s hollow scaremongering defeated their cause.
Activists like Harsh Mander, who pen articles like this not only cater to domestic propaganda but also find a cheering audience in Pakistan. The same ‘activist’ is a part of the liberal-secular ecosystem that signed a mercy petition for Yakub Memon. This would anger any sane Indian as terrorism cannot be tolerated in the larger interest of the nation. Indian secularists are blocking every avenue which could make India a harmonious society. The dangerous communal violence bill, the campaign to retain Triple Talaq and attempts to torpedo a settlement in Ram Janmabhoomi case by secularists are some examples.
Even if this ecosystem becomes politically irrelevant, its ability to damage the country remains intact. Therefore, eternal vigilance is essential to keep India on the path of progress and protect the unity of the country.