By Arun Srivastava
Assembly of around 5 thousand clerics, Imams and Islamic scholars from all over the country in Deoband of Uttar Pradesh to deliberate on issues related to demolition of mosques and the Uniform Civil Code (UCC) during a two-day session organised by Ulema-i-Hind on May 28, was shocked to see with tears rolling down the eyes chief of the Jamiat Ulama-e-Hind Maulana Mehmood Madani lamenting that the Modi government was treating the Muslims with disdain and has turned blind eye to the hardships Muslims were facing in the country during his regime.
While the two day congregation called upon the Muslims to observe March 14 as “International Day to Combat Islamophobia” the most important resolution it adopted was not to succumb to the Modi government’s pressure to accept imposition of Uniform Civil Code. So far some Muslim leaders and clerics have opposed the UCC on different fora, this is for the first time the entire Muslim community registered its opposition. The leadership also made it clear that they are ready to confront RSS and BJP and called upon the Muslims to get ready for launching satyagrah (civil disobedience) within the framework of the Indian Constitution to preserve and protect the Muslim identity which is systematically getting eroded by the rightist forces under Modi rule. They are even not allowing the Muslims to walk on the streets. This certainly cannot be tolerated.
This is for the first time during 8 years of RSS and BJP government run by Narendra Modi that Muslims have raised their voice and told in clear and loud voice that enough is enough and they will fight for their cause. But the decision came with a rider; the Muslim clerics requested Muslims not to publicly vent their anger against “Hindutva fanatics”. While they advised the community members “not to fight fire with fire” but to “defeat hatred with love”, and rued the silence of the government as “fanatics” try to poison society and weaken the country. Strangely Modi and Amit Shah have been maintaining a non-conforming attitude towards the activities of the bigots. Sudden multiplying of the number of worshippers of hatred has not gone unnoticed. Madani said “The silence of the government is unfortunate. But we will face this situation and never let the fanatics weaken the country.”
The contempt of the RSS and Sangh Parivar to the perseverance and tolerance of the Muslims is indeed manifest in the observation of a senior RSS leader and also member of the Rajya Sabha blaming Madani of doing politics and describing his tears as tears of crocodile. It is beyond comprehension that RSS could stoop so low in its quest to turn India into a Hindu Rashtra. It is really depressing that Modi and Shah have refused to show their concern to the plights and repression Muslims are undergoing.
Maharashtrian Brahmins who form the core of the RSS and guide its activities owe an explanation to the people of country, why they have been trying to ignite the element of Islamophobia? They are not only furnishing skewed and wrong information about the Muslim community, Islam and Mughal rulers, they are also furnishing wrong information to the Hindus and keeping them in dark. There is imperative need to make aware the people of both communities of their intentions and machinations.
It is worth recalling that in his letter of April 12 to Amit Shah, Maulana Madani had explicitly mentioned; “Anti-Muslim provocation by right-wing extremist groups have become a set pattern that is often followed by mass violence. The latest being Ram Navami processions…, after which violence was recorded from many places”. He even pointed out that the local police teams were creating a “fear psychosis among the minority communities” and urged for a “time-bound high-level judicial inquiry’’ into the Khargone violence.
Addressing the congregation of the Islamic scholars and clerics, Madani again pointed out; “The country is going through a phase of turmoil but those in the government have sealed their lips which is a cause of concern for all. Muslims are facing hardships even when they walk on the streets of their towns. We will bear every torture but will not let anyone dismember our country. We can compromise on all issues but not at the cost of the country and our conscience (zameer).
He cautioned the rulers that tolerance and perseverance ought to be not presumed as their weakness. He said “We at the Jamiat are torchbearers of peace and want to foster brotherhood. This is why we are ready to face any eventuality”. “We cannot extinguish fire with the fire. We have to defeat the atmosphere of hatred with love. Be calm and do not get swayed by the designs of those who want to disintegrate our country,” he said.
If the Modi government has really been concerned of the plights and miseries of the Muslims, the congregation might not have been held. In fact through this meet, the Muslims conveyed a strong message to the Modi government; they are ready to sacrifice but not to perish. This development would certainly not augur well for the RSS and BJP. They must stop treating others as hackneyed crowd.
One thing is absolutely explicit that the Hindu fundamentalists are bereft of the true national history. They simply parrot and believe the words of their leaders. How could Hindu society expect to get a scientific idea and information from the religious bigots who themselves are not aware of the correct and scientific history of India.
It is noticed that the bigots have been strongly opposed to pro people and left oriented historians. This is not without reason. They know that the historians like the Hindu bigots have not been resorting to falsehoods. The Indian historians have an impeccable record. What an irony in spite of Hindutva scholars and academics putting their heads together have not succeeded in proving that Gyanvapi masjid was built demolishing Shiv temple,
Incidentally in his letter of April 12 to Amit Shah, Maulana Madani had mentioned that the Khargone district administration had demolished 45 “illegal structures”, a day after the area witnessed communal clashes during Ram Navami procession. He sought his intervention to stop “harassment” of Muslims in Madhya Pradesh’s Khargone, where he has alleged that properties belonging to Muslims were being “selectively razed”.
There is no denying the fact that Sangh Parivar is out to destroy the Hindu ethos and Indian (Bharatiya) cultural ethics by resorting to hate campaign against the Muslims and demolishing their mosques on the plea that these were built on the precincts of temples of Hindu gods and goddesses by Muslim (Mughal) rulers. Narendra Modi and Amit Shah have been providing the necessary wherewithal to the Hindutva brigands for giving a shape to their designs. During last 8 years of his rule, Modi at no stage came out with stern warning to these offenders to keep away from such criminal activities. The wrongdoers go scot free as the police refrains from touching their skin.
On the contrary, the BJP and its leaders have openly been providing all kind of material help to such elements. It is irony that the home minister of India has been moving across the country and publically threatening the Muslims of implementing CAA, NCR and UCC. His behaviour has been most deplorable. He is presenting himself as the public face of Hindus, not the pliable Indians. Both the leaders are busy giving a shape to the Sangh mission of turning India into a Hindu Rashtra.
With the Hindutva outfits hell bent on capturing Gyanvapi Masjid and Krishna Janambhoomi of Mathura, the Muslim clerics, Imams and intellectuals have become alert of the impending social and political attack. The leaders of Muslim Personal Law Board are apprehensive that an atmosphere is being created in the country against Muslims. While the dispute between Kashi and Mathura is acquiring an ugly character, the demand for making Qutub Minar allegedly a Vishnu pillar and opening 22 rooms of the Taj Mahal is also gaining momentum. The Muslims nurse the feeling that the Muslim community has lost one of its mosques and now it cannot afford to lose any more mosques.
Already BJP-led Uttarakhand government has formed a five-member expert committee, headed by retired Supreme Court judge Ranjana Prakash Desai, for the implementation of the Uniform Civil Code (UCC) and to check all the relevant laws that control personal matters for those living in the state. She also heads the Delimitation Commission of India. Her panel recommended seven additional constituencies; six for Jammu and one for Kashmir. It was done to help the BJP in the state. (IPA Service)