India has an intense nationalism, is a greatest country on earth! India is multi cultural, pluralistic Nation. She has to arrive in economic, agriculture, social, educational, health and hygiene next to China. But, in reality corruption, religious chauvinism, pseudo politics, ignored minorities, industries employing not even one percent of the population is disturbing. Amity India strives to expose India’s anti secularist force , being detrimental to India’s progress and to the social justice.
Saturday, April 23, 2011
Behind the Enemy Lines!
The force ofsocial change and reform is such that any progressive paradigm would arouse negative emotions in chauvinists. Since the conservatives cannot facechallenges ofprogressive ideas, theyresort tocommunal -civil disorder andviolence.Most often then not, the emotions are fuelled by the political and religious vested interests.
Today, e.g., no onewould believe thatuntilthe19th century, workers andwomen had no rights to vote. Karl Marx (1818-83) was the first to call “Workers of the World Unite”. And the Christians used to burn the witches to control the plague epidemics in Europe.
In the United States, anti-slavery movement lead to the Civil War ( 1861-65). Abraham Lincoln (1809-65) banned the Slavery, but theMessiah of Libertywas assassinated bya faithful Christian, the follower ofChrist.
In India, the Hindus used to burnyoung widows ( sati) while chanting the Vedic mantras.Swami Dayananda Sarasvati ( 1824-1883) was the first social reformer who condemned the bigotry. He stopped idol worship, advocated equal rights for women and the dalits (out-castes). The Swami in his magnum opusSatyartha Prakahs ( Light of Truth)detailed whyhewas “Not a Hindu”. In 1883 he was killed with poisoned food served byhis brahman Hindu cook.
So, the struggle against socio-economic discrimination, andinjustice iscommon and universal.Not any community, region or religion specific.The Islamic jihadi violence too is indicativeofthe same conflict between the new world order challengingthe traditional belief systems. But the contractors of faithtrying toenforce obedience againstquestioning the outdated belief systems.The Islamic world is facing today anti-Blashfamyreform movement.
But smuggling arms, conspiring suicide bombing, killing and kidnapping ofunarmed citizens for any Divine orMessianicMission, specially against the democratic governance, cannot and must not be condoned as defendingHuman Rightsofminority or sub-nationalist aspiration.In the name ofthe Human Rights ofKashmiris or the Palestinians, e.g.,attacking airports, and towns and cities,and destruction of educational centres cannot be justified. The question is then not the colour or the creedof the conspirators buthow canwe, disown the past, and moveforwardwith a futuristic vision of21st century Democratic United Nations.
OnceIvisited Auschwitz camps wherea million Jews systematically were sent to gas chambers.That was the 20thcentury, the Age of Social Revolution spreading in Europe. But thefollowers ofthe Messenger of Peace, were trying to Save the World for the Second Coming of the Son of Mary. During the 1946-48 partition in India, Iwitnessedthe killing of innocent men, women and children belongingto both Divine Faith ( Hindus and Muslims). I saw at Amritsar Railway station trains streamed in fromacross the divided border- massacred – human bodies hanging from the roof and protruding out of the windows…
Whom should I hold guilty ?Where should I go seeking the justice?But in 1984, I defended many Sikh families and protected the Sikh Temple ( Gurudwara), in myneighbourhood,in New Delhi.Still, I coulddo nothing to help 300 innocent –men, women and children,many of them Sikhswho were drown in the deepsea when an Air India flightwas destroyed in the mid-air over the Atlantic Oceon, by theSikhistani Singhs ( Lions). The Saint Bhindrewalahad vowed“to clear ( kill)all Hindus from Panjab”.That was what the Sant told me one dark night in Jalandhr.
In 1989. after atrekking expedition in Kashmir, as I arrived at a village,I noticed a huge Mosque built just over the rampartof the ancient Buddhist site ofAvantipuram. Many black bannerswerehanging around in the village.Perhaps in protest against “ Indian occupation”, I thought.NO, the Kashmiris were mourning the death of Ayatollah Khomeini (1900-89),the founder of theShite fundamentalist republic in Iran(in 1979).
Who was he?. “Oh, you don’t know! He was (Peace be upon Him)…a GreatSoul,the Saint of Shias. (wo ekbahut badi atmaa the..) and that it was he who had got “The Mosques built here …” confirmed the village school teacher.
To my Kashmirihosts,I narrated how an old man during the partition days, went on fast demanding the Hindus stop killing ofMuslimsinIndia. The Mahatma was killed by a Marathi Hindu manoos. That was the great soul Gandhi. But the late KhomeiniledShias and Sunnies to kill each other and more than 100,000 Arab- muslims – Iranianand Iraqisfoughtan unending warwith guns Made-in- USA. But “ you Kashmiri brothers tell me that theKhomeini was aGreat Soul (“ badi atma”) who made muslim brothers to kill each other!”
The next day in Srinagar, I visited “Freedom Fighters” in their den.They told me they receivedarms training, and money fromother“brother countries”.On the wallthe banner read: “hans-ke liya hai Pakistan, Lad-ke lenge Hindustan.” ( By laughing we got Pakistan. By fighting we”ll capture India).Next day, the local media reported acid attacks on the college-going Kashmirigirls. I asked localfriends to condemnthe attack on the girls.
“You will flyout of here tomorrow.But our homes would be bombed…”.lamented the helpless muslimKashmiri intellectuals.
I do not deny violation ofHuman rights in Kashmir and Palestine. But thereare no innocent leaders and preachers on any side.The Friday sermons in the Mosquesdo not speak ofHuman Rights but call for Jihad.
Brother Shabir Shah is theMandela of Kashmir, wholost his youth 25 years inside theIndian jail. He was visiting us in Delhi. One Friday, he was takentothe Jama Masjid Mosque,and was askedby the Shahi Imam to speak on the atrocities ofIndian soldiers.
“I have come here to do ibadat, ( prayer) not politics.”retorted Shabir Shah. I wanted to take him to the Gandhi Samadhi ( Raj Ghat).
“I would be killed..” confined thebrother Shabir.
I learnt thatMarx and Gandhi are not covered by the Blashfamy laws.
The genesis ofKashmir and the Palestineis rootedin denial of Democratic paradigm. In the 21st century Space Age, no nation can be governed by thepreachers ofage-oldbelief systems.
Dhirendra Sharma ( Sharma is author of India’s Commitment to Kashmir).
(The responsibilities of the contents of the article rest on the writer)
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