Fifty nine years have passed since the British quit Hindustan after dividing it between Hindu India, and Muslim India called Pakistan, on the basis of religion as demanded by the Muslim League which got total support of Muslims of Hindu majority parts of the country in the crucial election of 1946. Total exchange of the Hindu and Muslim population, left behind in Muslim India and Hindu India, as demanded by the Muslim League was according to Dr B.R. Ambedker, the ?Logical corollary of Partition?. The Congress leadership accepted the Partition, exchange of civil servants, armed forces and even prisoners in jail, on the basis of their religion, but opposed the exchange of population for reasons that now stand fully exposed.
But Pakistan had its way; It cleansed Pakistan of its Hindu-Sikh population by force. The slogan that then rang in streets of Lahore?Has Ke Liya Pakistan larke lengae Hindustan (We have got Pakistan at no cost, we will get Hindustan by force)?gave an explicit indication of the mind of Pakistan. Pak invasion of Jammu and Kashmir in October 1947, desertion of the Muslim jawans and officers of the state army, enblock to Pak invaders, and the forcible religious cleansing of PoK exposed the mind and Plan of Pakistan in regard to Hindu India which had become ?Darul-Harb? for Muslims.
Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel was the only top Congress leader who learnt the lessons of Partition and tried to give nationalist orientation to the policies of free India. It was informally accepted that no Muslim would be given sensitive posts of chief of staff of the three wings of the armed forces and Home and foreign secretary of the Government of India.
As Vice-chairman of the ?Study Team? on Defence appointed by the Government of India in 1967, I had the opportunity to interact with the heads of Defence forces on Defence related problems, on the basis of their experience of wars with Pakistan in 1947-48 and 1965. At that time, the borders of Gujarat and Rajasthan with Pakistan came under the purview of the southern command with its headquarter at Pune. I wanted to know about the experiences of the armed forces about the conduct of Muslims living on the border areas. The commanding officers were reluctant to answer but when I insisted on getting a candid answer, I was told, that exceptions apart, they could hardly trust a Muslim. With the growing communalisation of national policies in favour of Muslims, under the name of secularism in the recent years, thing have become worse.
Worldwide resurgence of fundamentalist Islam, expanding field of operation of Muslim terrorists in the context of declaration of leaders of the Al-Qaida, about bracketing Hindus with Jews and ?crusaders? i.e., Christians as the main targets of Islamic Muslim terrorism, has made it clear that this worldwide Muslim terrorism, has nothing to do with specific grievances in regard to Kashmir or Palestine. It is therefore, wrong to think that Muslim terrorists activities in India will stop if a settlement of Kashmir issue to the satisfaction of Pakistan is arrived at. It is wrong to think that such activities are handiwork of some misguided and unemployed youth who act as agents of Pakistan backed Muslim jehadi organisations at a price. Muslim terrorism have world view and clear objective of establishing the sway of Islam and imposition of Islamic laws and values opposite of democratic and humanistic values, which uphold freedom of thought, religion and guarantee peaceful existence.
Tony Blair, the Prime Minister of UK has spelt out in his speech at Foreign Affairs Council at Los Angeles, USA, his assessment of the developing situation. According to him the conflict is multi-dimensional. On the one side it is between what he calls ?Reactionary Islam?, and ?Moderate? and ?Reformist Islam? and on the other between Humanism and Islamism. President Bush calls it ?Islamic Fascism?.
Talk about reactionary Islam and reformist Islam is an exercise in self-deception. Islam is bound to and guided by letter and spirit of Koran, which does not permit any kind of reform. The movement for modernisation and reforms of Islam started by Kemal Pasha is now in retreat in Turkey itself. Fundamentalist and Reactionary Islam is gaining ground all over the world. Policy makers of India driven by vote bank politics have been ignoring these hard realities. Their policies favour Muslim terrorisms.
This has encouraged Islamic separatists and fundamentalists to gain ground and widen their base in India. The rapid growth of Madrasas and so-called minority institutions particularly Aligarh Muslim University and Jamia Milia Islamic at Delhi are playing a dangerous role in this respect.
As things are, the world is moving towards a third world war which is bound to become a war between humanism and Islamists on the one side and humanism and huministic values on the other. India with its long tradition of freedom of thought and worship coupled with the fact that over 95 per cent of Indian Muslims are progeny of converts to Islam and are therefore blood relations of Hindus could have given a Humanistic orientation to Islam and moderate and reformist look to Indian Muslims. That has not been done. Rising generation of Indian Muslims is therefore becoming more prone to Islamic fanaticism than ever before. That is why local support base of Muslim terrorists terrorists is expanding.
Unless effective steps are taken to check this, it may go out of hand. War with Pakistan is inevitable. Any kind of softness towards Islamists and Muslim terrorists would be disastrous.
(The author an ex. MP, former President, Bharatiya Jan Sangh President, The Nationalist Forum, can be contacted at J-394, Shankar Road, New Delhi-110060)