Skip to main content

If I were Muslim ... Bakha Dutt, explains the agony of Muslims in India under grip of Hindu extremists


I am agnostic and entirely non-religious; I do not self-identify with any religion and leave the required column blank in application forms. I suppose you could call me—as my beloved Twitter trolls will—(that dreaded word) a liberal, deracinated by her own lack of cultural roots. I concede that my secularism has suffered from a lack of mooring in faith. So I am not best qualified to see life through the prism of any religious identity. Yet, for the last week, a question has been gnawing at me, nibbling away, bit by bit, at my conscience and sense of comfort: what if I were Muslim?
Image result for hindu violence against muslims on cow

What would I feel to discover that my voice is now barely audible in the country’s political discourse because I am no longer needed to win elections? Or, that in the most populous state of India, not a single candidate of the party that stormed home with a mammoth majority was Muslim? Would I be able to celebrate Eid after seeing the photograph of Junaid’s blood-spattered body lying lifeless on a railway platform in north India? A teenager, Junaid was coarsely taunted for his religion in a squabble that started over an elusive seat on a crowded train, but eventually became only about Being Muslim. What would I tell myself after seeing the cattle trader, Pehlu Khan, flung to the side of a pavement by a murderous mob, his tear-stained face crying out for help that never came? Would I be able to share the optimism of Mohammed Sartaj, a proud corporal in the Air Force, who told me, “Saare Jahan se Accha Hindustan Hamara,” his belief in justice intact even after his father, Akhlaq, was murdered over beef rumours, and the body of a man accused of killing him was draped in the national flag, with a senior minister present at the village? What sense would I make of this new lexicon where words like ‘vigilantes’ and ‘lynching’ are casual normalisations of collective bigotry?

If I were Muslim, how much helpless rage might I feel about radical Islamists and terrorists who soil the name of my faith and then leave me to carry the cross of condemning them, like I am somehow responsible for their monstrous acts? What would I say to the family of Ayub Pandith, a brave Kashmiri police officer, beaten to death outside a mosque on the holiest night of Shab-e-Qadr? Or, to the family of strappingly handsome Umar Fayaz, a young soldier, killed while home for a family wedding? How would I deal with the self-appointed custodians of my religion—the orthodoxy that defends retrograde practices like triple talaq—only to embarrass me and strengthen the bigots who attack my community?

 82-Muslim Illustration: Bhaskaran
If I were Muslim, what might I feel as a citizen to learn that no Central minister attended an iftar evening hosted by India’s President? I would remind myself that even heroes of my community, President Abdul Kalam among them, said no to the wastefulness of iftar parties, donating money to orphanages instead. And, I would tell myself that my identity need not be reduced to such tokenism. But a small part of me would wonder if the same (welcome) political separation between religion and state would apply to all other festivals, too, like Diwali, Christmas and Holi.

If I were Muslim, I would look back in dismay at parties that claimed to speak for me but manipulated me and then abandoned me. I would think of Shah Bano, who went to court for the right to alimony, only to have the decision reversed by the Rajiv Gandhi government, in what would be the first, but not the only, instance of ‘secular’ malpractice. And I would think: are these my only options—a party that pushes me to the margins of irrelevance and a party that uses me?

If I were Muslim, I would remind myself of all the million reasons I love my country. But, just like every time they told me that I as a ‘moderate’ must speak up, I would ask, will the moderate Hindus—the vast majority of India—speak up for me?
By Barkha Dutt | From issue dated July 09, 2017 twitterlinkedingooglefacebook


  2. The decline of Indian Muslims
  3. Just less than 3% Muslims in Indian Army
  4. Indian Muslims reject extremist creeds- Wiki-leaks
  5. Indian Muslims: Sachar Committee Report on latest social, economic and educational condition of the Muslim community of India

How are Indian Muslims different from other Muslims around the world ...
The difference from social science prospective. for example, Inter faith and ... Indian Muslims as a minority group of India could be an interesting case study in the ...

'Isn't this our country?' Why Indian Muslims feel shaken and 'harassed ...
May 30, 2017 - The feeling of distrust between the BJP government and Muslims in Uttar Pradesh has grown after the recent assembly elections.

al-Qaeda operative Zakir Musa: Zakir Musa slams Indian Muslims for ... › India News
Jun 6, 2017 - Al-Qaeda operative Zakir Musa asked Indian Muslims to join Jihad; He said that most of their tragedies are triggered by the United Nations ...

Indian Muslims in the Age of Muslim Uprisings | HuffPost
In this ocean of despair, one finds the Indian Muslim community, an island of calm moderation. Its not a small island either, it is a pretty big chunk. Indian Muslims ...

How oppressed are Muslims in India? - In Review - Herald › In Review › Review essay
Aug 2, 2016 - In that sense, then, Indian Muslims certainly are a minority, particularly when one considers the growing influence of Hindu right-wing forces ..

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~  ~ ~ ~  ~

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~  ~ ~ ~  ~
Humanity, Knowledge, Religion, Culture, Tolerance, Peace
انسانیت ، علم ، اسلام ،معاشرہ ، برداشت ، سلامتی 
Books, Articles, Blogs, Magazines,  Videos, Social Media
بلاگز، ویب سائٹس،سوشل میڈیا، میگزین، ویڈیوز,کتب
سلام فورم نیٹ ورک  Peace Forum Network 
Join Millions of visitors: لاکھوں وزٹرز میں شامل ہوں 
سوشل میڈیا پر جوائین کریں یا اپنا نام ، موبائل نمر923004443470+ پر"وہٹس اپپ"یا SMS کریں   
Join 'Peace-Forum' at Social Media, WhatsApp/SMS Name,Cell#at +923004443470

Popular posts from this blog

A historic moment in the Arab world

لحظة تاريخية في العالم العربي
As a democratic revolution led by tech-empowered young people sweeps the Arab world, Wadah Khanfar, Al Jazeera's director-general, shares a profoundly optimistic view of what's happening in Egypt, Tunisia, Libya and beyond. In the first talk posted online from the TED 2011 conference in California, Khanfar describes the powerful moment when people realised they could step out of their homes and ask for change. "كما ثورة ديمقراطية بقيادة الشباب التكنولوجيا ذات صلاحيات تجتاح العالم العربي ، وضاح خنفر ، الجزيرة المدير العام والأسهم وجهة نظر متفائلة بشكل كبير ما يحدث في مصر وتونس وليبيا وخارجها. وفي اول حديث له نشر على الانترنت من مؤتمر تيد 2011 في ولاية كاليفورنيا ، خنفر يصف لحظة قوية عند الناس أدركت أنها لا يمكن الخروج من منازلهم ونطلب من أجل التغيير." This talk was given on March 1, 2011 in Long Beach, California. TED 2011 is taking place between March 1 and Mar…

Our Captured, Wounded Hearts: Arundhati Roy On Balakot, Kashmir And India

With his reckless “pre-emptive” airstrike on Balakot in Pakistan, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has inadvertently undone what previous Indian governments almost miraculously, succeeded in doing for decades. Since 1947 the Indian Government has bristled at any suggestion that the conflict in Kashmir could be resolved by international arbitration, insisting that it is an “internal matter.” By goading Pakistan into a counter-strike, and so making India and Pakistan the only two nuclear powers in history to have bombed each other, Modi has internationalised the Kashmir dispute. He has demonstrated to the world that Kashmir is potentially the most dangerous place on earth, the flash-point for nuclear war. Every person, country, and organisation that worries about the prospect of nuclear war has the right to intervene and do everything in its power to prevent it.  Keep reading  >>>>

India has built around itself an aura of a global power whose time has come. For at least the last t…

Kashmir Jihad - Analysis & Options


Kashmir is an incomplete agenda of partition of India. Since 1947, India and Pakistan have fought three wars on this issue. According to UN resolutions, Kashmiris have to decide their accession to Pakistan or India through impartial plebiscite, which could not take place due to Indian reluctance. Recently, India revoked Article 370 of the Constitution, which granted special autonomous status to Kashmir, it was done to unilaterally integrate occupied Kashmir. This is a violation of the UN resolutions and the Simla bilateral agreement, which demands to maintain status quo until the final settlement. The US and world powers are emphasizing that Kashmir should be resolved bilaterally, though India has refused to hold talks with Pakistan. In the present scenario, while India has turned Kashmir into the largest prison of 9 million people, denying basic human rights and oppressing the Kashmiris' who want freedom from India, Pakistan cannot watch as a silent spec…