Recently newspapers started a debate that no big communal riot occurred in any part of the country after 2002, and this shows that communal amity has been established in the country. This debate was initiated at the completion of ten years of anti-Muslim pogrom in Gujarat, and certain commentators advised that the Muslims, having forgotten whatever had happened in Gujarat, should concentrate themselves on their socio-economic development. In this context the issue of reservation also came under discussion, and column-writers of a particular mentality expressed their view that as the socio-economic condition of Muslims is improving, the Muslim community should give up its claim to reservation. An article on this subject was published in The Hindustan Times of 16th March. The writer Ram Chandra Guha has emphasized that since the condition of Muslims has turned for the better, they should not stake any claim which might provide an opportunity for communalism to raise its head in the country once again. Some commentators and letter-writers rejected this deceitful view with strong arguments.
The candidness of a writer
Now Ram Puniyani, in his fresh article, has strongly rejected both these assumptions. He has written that neither communal amity has been established in the country nor the socio-economic condition of Muslims has changed for the better. Non-occurrence of any major communal riot within a period of ten years does not mean that prejudice and discrimination against Muslims has come to an end. The fact remains that even today this discrimination continues more or less in every branch of life in the country. The police are biased during riots even today as it was seen in Rajasthan recently. The government has adopted a policy all over the country that after every incident of violence the case is “solved” by detaining some Muslims. There is talk of forgetting the incidents that shook Gujarat in 2002 but Muslims are in a worse condition there even today. The victims were not delivered justice nor were they rehabilitated – those who want to keep Muslims deprived of reservation on the ground of non-occurrence of riots are in the wrong. Ram Puniyani is a straightforward and realistic writer of English. This article of his was published in the March 21 issue of The Hindustan Times.
Analyze it more deeply
The realities pointed out by Ram Puniyani are undoubtedly real. There is also no doubt in the fact that he has displayed much courage. However if he gives a further fillip to his courage and analyze the causes of the prevailing situation more deeply, he would definitely reach the conclusion that this is the result of the same planned conspiracy which was hatched during the last few years of the British Raj and a few years before the independence of the country. In the beginning such a situation was created in which a large chunk of Muslims of the subcontinent started seeing solution to their problems in their having a separate State, and then with much deceit a small piece of land in the name of Pakistan was dished out to them and thus the united strength of Muslims was broken, and having taken them permanent hostage they were practically treated as second class citizens. Then putting total responsibility of Partition on their shoulders, continuous propaganda was unleashed against them through syllabi, history books and media. This deep and far-reaching Machiavellian conspiracy was bound to result in the situation which Ram Puniyani is lamenting today. The most colossal loss the Muslim community had to bear is that having been in this situation it forgot its status of Daie (caller to the truth) and Ummat-e-Wast (the median community).
28/03/12 khabar-O-Nazar by Parwaaz Rahmani, sehrozaDAWAT, translated by: Abu Yusuf