31. Baljit Rai
We cannot be sufficiently grateful to Dr. Godbole for having questioned the validity of a thesis advanced by the BJP think-tank and its allied organisations with a view to creating a constituency among the Indian Muslims who form barely 12% of the total population of India. The BJP brains trust has devised an agenda of which the eight formulations pointed out by Dr. Godbole form the core. Dr. Godbole has debunked each of the formulations with irrefutable and cogent arguments.
It is hard to imagine that anyone, much less the BJP which is wedded to the cause of Hindus and India, could have advanced an irrational, untenable and an unworkable thesis such as this. More than the Hindus, Muslims themselves will reject this thesis out of hand if not with utter contempt. This approach of the BJP also indicates total intellectual bankruptcy and abysmal ignorance of those who are supposed to know better. At the least, the BJP should not have overlooked its obligation towards the people (read Hindus) who had put their faith in it and in its ability to guide and lead the nation, not to indulge in such puerilities and mindlessness. The real problem is not the Muslim but the Hindu who has elevated his pusillanimity into a high grade philosophy of life which he is not prepared to give up at any price, even though it has cost him very heavily again and again. What is the problem with the Hindu? Here is Nirad C Chaudhry�s answer: �By the time the Muslims established their rule in the country (circa 1200 A.D.) the old inhabitants of the country, i.e. the Hindus, had lost their vitality to such an extent that they became incapable of dealing with or even facing a situation if it was difficult or unpleasant. So they surrendered to any situation that was created for them by history and tried to be at peace with their conscience by banishing it from their mind with soothing words.�
Is the BJP brand of Hindu any different? Does the BJP thesis not amount to mere soothing verbiage? Does the Hindu understand the Muslim psyche or Islam? A quote from another distinguished author, V.S. Naipaul, is relevant: �You have a real problem now in India. Very few Hindus know what Islam is. Very few Hindus have studied it or given it any thought. And you cannot appeal to Muslim intellectuals. Islam is a religion of revelation. The Prophet�s revelations are final. The laws have been all issued. Other societies adapt as the need arises, as traditions change, as the world changes. You adopt new attitudes to crime and deviance. This constant re-assessment is impossible in Islam. All that you can do is to re-interpret the Prophet�s decrees. This is one reason why on the Muslim side reforms are not talked about much. If someone says we have to rethink, the believer would say, how dare you? You can be a reformist in Hindu tradition and you will not be considered a heretic. But any Muslim who talks about reforms in a fundamental way will commit heresy. It was so in Christianity at the time of Galileo. It is an immense intellectual problem for the educated Muslims of India.�
So, the tragedy of the Hindu is twofold. Firstly, he has lost the vitality to live a life in which his self-respect, self-esteem and dignity is assured. Secondly, he does not understand the true nature of either Christianity or Islam, not even such despicable terms as Heathen, Kafir and Dar-ul-Harb which directly concern him.
Of all the formulations the one which astounds the most is the one mentioned at No. 5 which reads, �Congress used Muslims. We (BJP) will treat Muslims as human beings.� The implications of this formulation are extremely damaging to the Hindus and the cause of Hinduism. It presumes that Muslims in India are being maltreated and that they are not getting a fair deal even in secular India. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Apart from giving the Muslims an undeserved opportunity to malign India as a nation practising the worst kind of discrimination against them, namely, that they have not been treated as human beings, this formulation also hides the fact that the boot is on the other foot. In reality, it is the Hindus, though in majority, who have been at the receiving end at the hands of the Muslim minority, throughout history. Let us consider the record of Muslim violence against Hindu in Pakistan, Bangladesh and India after 1947. There is no need to go back to earlier centuries because the blood-stained history of Muslim rulers is much too well known. We shall also consider the present day attitude of the Muslims towards the Hindus and India, and the position of Hindus vis-à-vis Muslims or Hinduism versus Islam in the Indian sub-continent.
Since 1947, the Muslims have subjected the Hindus to repeated genocide which has permanently altered the demographic status of the Hindus to their everlasting disadvantage with potential for faith erosion.
The first genocide of Hindus and Sikhs in West Pakistan was carried out and completed in less than three months in 1947 with unprecedented butchery and thoroughness. Lakhs of Hindus and Sikhs were slaughtered and millions of them driven out of their centuries-old hearths and homes. The cataclysmic results of this terrible �ethnic cleansing� of Hindus and Sikhs were momentous in more ways than one. Firstly, Hinduism and Sikhism disappeared from the western wing of the newly constituted state of Pakistan. Secondly, West Pakistan became a single-religion country. One could understand the secular intellectuals deliberately closing their eyes to these horrendous realities, but why the BJP?
The second genocide of Hindus was organised and masterminded by the Muslims in East Pakistan (now Bangladesh). The Hindu minority which constituted 30% of the total population of East Pakistan in 1947, though not �ethnically cleansed� instantly like the Hindus and Sikhs in West Pakistan, became victim of a different kind of genocide which was even worse in terms of savagery and barbarism. This was genocide by slow haemorrhage. The Islamic terrorists in Bangladesh (in fact the entire nation practised terrorism against Hindus) resorted to riots actively engineered by the government, and went on with bloodshed, destruction and forcible occupation of Hindu property, abduction and rape of Hindu women, enforcement of Islamic laws which were utterly unjust, and denial of civil and human rights which left no options for the Hindus but to either convert to Islam or migrate to India and rot on the streets of Calcutta. The Muslims of East Pakistan practised the worst kind of Islamic terrorism towards the Hindus. Consequently, Hindu population in East Pakistan/Bangladesh has been reduced from 30% in 1947 to less than 10% in 1991.
This unending diaspora which began in 1947, culminated in the unprecedented migration of ten million Hindus to India in 1971 when Pakistan was caught in the throes of a bloody civil war which led to the break up of the country and emergence of Bangladesh as an independent Islamic state. What did those millions of Hindu migrants refugees experience in the camps in India? The quality of life in those camps was by all standards subhuman and the number of refugees dying of hunger, fatigue, malnutrition, exhaustion and diseases of all kinds was so large that when a camp commandant was asked as to what he needed most to run his camp, his reply was - a crematorium! Such were the consequences of this interminable genocide of Hindus. But did this genocide end with the termination of the civil war in Pakistan and emergence of Bangladesh? No. The stone of Islamic fundamentalism never stops grinding the non-Muslims (Hindus in particular) into dust. The pogrom of Hindus in Bangladesh continues unabated.
Now we come to the third genocide of Hindus which has been carried out as ruthlessly by the Muslims in Kashmir (a part of India) as in Islamic Pakistan and Bangladesh. Kashmiri Hindus (commonly known as Kashmiri Pandits) were barely 3.95% and living in the midst of Muslims who constituted 94.6% of the total population of the Kashmir Valley. They were a tiny minority and posed no threat to the Muslims. Yet they have been �ethnically cleansed� after being subjected to the usual �Islamic treatment� and now they too are languishing in refugee camps. Not a single secular saint (read devil) in India has shed a tear for these Hindus living miserably in filth and poverty. Is the Hindu destined to suffer indignities and other horrors at the hands of Muslim? It seems so.
These three genocides have had devastating effect on the demographic status of Hindus in the Indian sub-continent. These are:
Firstly, Hinduism and Sikhism have totally disappeared from 9,56,040 sq. km. area of the Indian sub-continent (Pakistan 7,96,095 sq. km., Bangladesh 1,44,000 sq. km. and Kashmir Valley 15,095 sq. km.). This area is approximately 1/4th of the area of pre-Partition India.
Secondly, in terms of territorial spread, Islam occupies the top slot and Hinduism has been relegated to the second position in the Indian sub-continent. While Islam is flourishing in Pakistan, Bangladesh and India, Hinduism is confined to India only.
Thirdly, while Pakistan and Bangladesh are exclusively meant for the Muslims, in India Muslims are the shareholders along with the Hindus and others. Thus the Muslims are having the cake and eating it too.
Here is the
demographic profile of Hindus and Muslims in the Indian sub-continent which
should be cause for serious concern to every Hindu:
|India||700 million||120 million|
|Pakistan||nil ''||130 ''|
|Bangladesh||10 ''||130 ''|
|Total||710 ''||380 ''|
Thus for 710 million Hindus there are 380 million Muslims or less than 2 Hindus for 1 Muslim in the Indian sub-continent. How long will the Hindus be able to maintain this ratio? Not for very long. But our secular angels (read demons) would protest and say without questioning these figures that Hindus in India are 80% and Muslims only 12%, so where is the danger? Yes, where is the danger indeed?
The problem with our secular saints and angels is that they were blind in 1947 and they continue to be blind even in 1997 � after a lapse of fifty years. They did not see the threat of Islamic genocides looming large over India in 1947, and they cannot see the threat emanating from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Indian Muslims today.
Now let us have a look at the extraordinary arrogance of Indian Muslims who had supported the cause of Pakistan wholeheartedly prior to 1947. In the elections held in 1946, the Muslim League led by Jinnah won all the 30 Muslim seats in the Central Assembly and 427 out of the 507 Muslim seats in the Provincial legislatures. The North-West Frontier Province was the only exception where the Congress-Red Shirt alliance came to power. Thus, by the logic of voting and massive support to the cause of Pakistan, the Indian Muslims forfeited their right to live in India after Partition on 15th August 1947. Thus they should have, on their own, migrated to Pakistan. But they did not. The extraordinary spirit of humanity that was extended to them by the Hindus, who allowed them to continue to live in India as equal citizens, drew little appreciation from the Muslims. Ingratitude towards infidels is fundamental to Muslim psyche and character. Now, fifty years later, the Indian Muslim has become as arrogant as he was before 1947 and carries his Islamic haughtiness right on his collars. He stubbornly refuses to be a part of the Indian nation as the following would show:
1. The Indian Muslim has not accepted any part of India�s Constitution except that relating to fundamental and minority rights.
2. He has outright rejected the Common Civil Code for the nation.
3. He has rejected Vande Mataram which is our national song.
4. He does not accept Hindi as the national language even in Hindi speaking states. His preference is invariably for Urdu.
5. He has never condemned the ethnic cleansing of Hindus in the Kashmir Valley.
6. He has never condemned Muslim infiltration from Bangladesh. In fact, he tacitly supports the cause of illegal Bangladeshi infiltration because this adds to his numerical strength and political clout in the country.
7. He refuses to accept the fact that there is no such thing as the Muslim Ummah except as an anti-Hindu Front. If there was such a thing, why has Saudi Arabia expelled thousands of Bangladesh nationals who are all Muslims? Again, why has Pakistan refused to accept eight lakh Bihari Muslims who are languishing in camps in Bangladesh since 1971?
The plain and simple truth about the Indian Muslim is that he is a blackmailer par excellence. He blackmailed the nation before 1947 and he is blackmailing the nation today. Why has all this escaped the notice of the BJP think-tank? Ideologically, religiously, politically and socially, it is the Muslims who have treated the Hindus, despite the latter�s larger number, as less than human beings throughout history. It is the absence of this realisation and truth in the BJP thesis which is astounding. On the contrary, it plans to treat the Muslims as human beings, perhaps for the sake of their votes. What a travesty of historical and present-day realities relating to Muslims in India!
Every Hindu must consider the entire gamut of Muslim atrocities on Hindus from the time of Muhammad bin Qasim in the early eighth century down to Muslim League�s genocide of Hindus and Sikhs in Pakistan from August 1947 to September 1947. In the intervening centuries - from the eighth to the twentieth - there was no respite for the Hindus from Islamic atrocities. Hindus did not escape this fate even during the British rule.
What is it that explains such terrible animus on the part of Muslims against Hindus called idolators? The answer is simple and straight. The fault lies not so much with Muslims as with Islamic theology, which, according to Muslims, is revelatory and hence cannot be changed, modified or amended. Any such attempt would mean heresy which would invite the penalty of death. It is this aspect of Islamic theology which has completely escaped the notice of the BJP think-tank while drawing up a new charter for integrating Islam with Hinduism. Let us, therefore consider some of the notable verses in the Quran which provide necessary sanction for shedding the blood of non-believers.
1. In 9: 29, Allah resorts to swearing: The Unbelievers are impure and their abode is hell.
2. On unbelievers is the curse of Allah (2: 161).
3. Allah is an enemy to unbelievers (2: 98).
4. Allah mocks the unbelievers (2: 15).
5. Unbelievers are the enemies of Allah and they will roast in hell (41: 14).
6. Muslims are the best of all nations (3: 110). Thus they are superior people, entitled to dominate the rest of the mankind.
7. O Ye who believe! Murder those of the disbelievers� and let them find harshness in you (9: 123).
8. Humiliate the non-Muslims to such an extent that they surrender and pay tribute (9: 29).
9. Certainly Allah is an enemy to the unbelievers (2: 60).
10. Allah has cursed the unbelievers and proposed for them a blazing hell (33: 60).
11. O Believers! do not make friends with the Jews and Christians� whoso of you makes them his friend is one of them (5: 55).
12. Muslims are harsh against the unbelievers, merciful to one another (48: 25).
13. Fight against them until idolatry is no more and Allah�s religion reigns supreme (2: 193).
14. Make war on them until idolatry is no more and Allah�s religion reigns supreme (8: 39).
15. Fighting is obligatory for you, much as you dislike it. But you may hate a thing although it is good for you, and love a thing although it is bad for you. Allah knows, but you do not (2: 216).
16. Believers! make war on the infidels who dwell around you. Let them find harshness in you (9: 123).
17. O Prophet! make war on the unbelievers and the hypocrites and deal sternly with them. Hell shall be their home, evil their fate (66: 9).
18. O Prophet! make war on the unbelievers and the hypocrisies. Be harsh with them. Their ultimate abode is Hell, a hapless journey�s end (9: 73).
19. O Prophet! exhort the believers to fight. If there are twenty steadfast men among you, they shall rout a thousand unbelievers, for they are devoid of understanding (8: 65-66).
20. Muhammad is Allah�s aspostle. Those who follow him are ruthless to the unbelievers but merciful to one another� Through them Allah seeks to enrage the unbelievers (48:29).
21. Allah will humble the unbelievers. Allah and His apostle are free from obligation to the idol-worshippers. Proclaim a woeful punishment to the unbelievers (9: 2-3).
22. When the sacred months are over slay the idol-worshippers wherever you find them. Arrest them, besiege them, and lie in ambush everywhere for them. If they repent and take to prayer and pay the alms-tax, let them go their way. Allah is forgiving and merciful (.9:5).
23. We renounce you (i.e. the idolaters): enmity and hate shall reign between us until you believe in Allah only (60.4).
24. Allah and His apostle pose no trust in idolaters (9: 7).
25. The basest creatures in the sight of Allah are the faithless who will not believe� (8: 55).
26. Believers! do not befriend your fathers or you brothers if they choose unbelief in preference to faith. Wrong-doers are those that befriend them (9: 23).
27. Believers! know that the idolaters are unclean (9: 28).
28. Therefore, We stirred among them (i.e. the Christians) enmity and hatred, which shall endure till the Day of Resurrection, when Allah will declare to them all that they have done (5: 14).
29. Unbelievers are those who declare: �Allah is the Messiah (i.e. Christ), the son of Mary.� Say: �who could prevent Allah from destroying the Messiah (i.e. Christ), the son of Mary, together with his mother and all the people of the earth?� (5: 17).
30. The unbelievers among the people of the Book (i.e. Christians and Jews) and the pagans shall bum for ever in the fire of Hell. They are the vilest of all creatures (98: 5 1).
31. Garments of fire have been prepared for unbelievers. Scalding water shall be poured upon their heads, melting their skins and that which is in their bellies. They shall be lashed with red hot iron (22: 19-22).
32. Tell the unbelievers that if they mend their ways (i.e. embrace Islam) their past shall be forgiven: but if they persist in sin (i.e. idol-worshipping) let them reflect upon the fate of their forefathers (8: 38).
33. I shall cast terror into the hearts of the infidels. Strike off their heads, maim them in every limb (8: 12).
34. We shall say, �Lay hold of him and bind him. Burn him in the fire of Hell, then fasten him with a chain seventy cubits long. For he did not believe in Allah, the Most High�� (8: 15-18).
35. Do not yield to the unbelievers, but fight them strenuously with this Koran (25: 52).
A reading of the above directives from Allah leaves no doubt that so far as non-Muslims or non-believers are concerned, the Quran is not a religious book at all but a war manual and a penal code. This aspect of the Quran does not seem to have drawn sufficient attention or appreciation of the BJP think-tank; had it done so there is little doubt that it would have realised the impossibility of the task of incorporating Muhammad as one of the Gods or Avatars of the Hindu pantheon.
Does Hinduism have the equivalent of warlike terms like Ghanima, Mujahid, Shahid, Jiziya, Zimmi, Jihad, Dar-ul-Islam, Dar-ul-Harb, Ghazi etc. in any one of its scriptures? None at all. The Quran, which is said to be a revealed book with the master copy lying in the custody of Allah in high heavens, is replete with these terms. How can these terms be homogenised with Hinduism?
The very attempt of the BJP think-tank is not merely puerile and naive but egregiously childish.
The same goes for Christ whom the Christians claim to be the only son of God and one who, two thousand years ago, atoned for the sins of all humanity before and after him. How stupid and ridiculous! Christians may have some religious compulsions to implicitly believe in the dogmas but no Hindu can do so.
The utter impactibility of the eight formulations also comes into high relief when we consider these in the context of demographic status of Christianity, Islam, Hinduism and other religions in the world.
Compared with Christianity and Islam, which are spread over several countries, Hinduism is confined to just one or two countries. Why? The BJP think-tank must provide answer not only to this question but also whether its formulations are the right answers to the challenges posed by Christianity and Islam to Hinduism. I, for one, would not buy the thesis of the BJP think-tank.
However, the year 2000 of the Christian Calendar is only three years away. It is just the appropriate time to cogitate over the miseries and misfortunes that we Hindus suffered first at the hands of the Islamic imperialism and then the Christian-Western colonialism, and what we can or should do to recover our amour-propre. As a number of leading lights among Hindus think and propagate that the 21st century and future belongs to Hindus and Hinduism, one would like to know how? Mere expression of wishes is not enough.
exposition I have largely confined myself to formulations Nos. 3 and 5
only. So far as other formulations are concerned, they are merely offshoots
of the two discussed above. In respect of these also I fully agree with
the views of Dr. Godbole. Will the BJP think-tank care to have a second
look at its own thesis?
writer is a retired IPS officer, now settled in Chandigarh. He has written
several books with which readers of Voice of India publications are familiar.