It is the appeasement polity that divided our beloved motherland in 1947. Some of our national leaders were in a hurry to grab power. They were so greedy that they did not think of the consequences of Partition. So our national unity was negated at the very outset of our Independence.
It is useless to say that the British were the root cause for the division of our country. It was they who had pursued with the policy of ?divide and rule?. For them it was but natural. Because they had to rule this land captured by them. One can understand their point of view. But what were our national leaders doing at that time? The political scenario of our country in 1920s was quite confused especially after the emergence of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi in the political arena. It was because of him that the Indian National Congress had started a movement called ?Khilafat? to reinstate the Caliph in Turkey. What interest India or for that matter Indian National Congress had got to protect the interest of Turkish? They say, to win over the support of Muslims it was necessary. But till today we could not win over them. Why? This big question has to be understood properly and then we could find an answer to it.
First, the British had purposely propagated that Hindus are also invaders to this land like Muslims British and many others and they cannot claim that this is their homeland. They established confusion successfully. Second, Muslims are of firm belief that as they conquered this land and ruled it for several years it is their right to rule. Third, the British took the advantage of the situation and instigated the Muslims to come forward with their demand of ownership of this land. It was the British who helped Salimullah, Nawab of Dacca; it is said, by giving Rs. One lakh to establish Muslim League, a parallel organisation to Indian National Congress. Fourth, both the British and the Muslim stood against, as they call it, ?Hindu Revivalism?. Naturally they became united to defeat the Hindu nationalists. On the other hand, as Michael Edwardes wrote in his book ?The Last years of British India?, ?Although Congressmen believed the British to be engaged in deepening communal differences, on the principle of ?divide and rule?, a Muslim League leader came nearer the truth when he said at the Round Table conference in 1931, ?It is the old maxim of ?divide and rule?. But there is a division of labour here, We divide and you rule.?
With the growing strength of Congress, and the British apparently indifferent to their fears, Indian Muslims looked outside India to their co-religionists in other countries. They saw that they were not alone and from this discovery, there grew the sense of separateness from the rest of India which led inescapably to partition.? (P 27)
Ultimately partition became a reality and the greedy Congressmen felt, for several reasons, that they could not enjoy power without Muslim support. Curiously enough, over the period, all political parties of India, perhaps without any exception, believed that without Muslim support they could not come to power. This unpardonable weakness had crept in the minds of all political parties and only for that reason even our nationalist parties were not in a position to ignore the ground reality, especially when they had to work under democracy.
Precisely this is the reason why political parties are so eager to appease those sections of people who are organised and cast votes unitedly for a purpose. The Muslim, the Christian, and other ethnic groups characteristically pursued this policy over the period. Hence in the name of minority protection in a secular state like India, political parties are all out to enact laws to provide facilities for them. Apparently this is not bad, as this should be the policy of a majority section of people. But then many questions will come up as to who are minorities? What are their motives? Are they against the security or interest of the country?
According to the UNO Charter, in a country minorities are those who form 10 or less per cent of the total population of a particular country. Therefore Muslims are not a minority community in our country because they form more than 10 per cent of the total population. Taking part in the debate on National Minority Educational Institution Commission Bill, 2004, BJP member of Rajya Sabha Prof. Bal Apte said, ?There is another definition. ?Minority? is something which, as the Act says, will be decided by the Central Government. How can the Central Government decide about what is stated expressly by and is interpreted, as such, by the Constitution and the Supreme Court. Minorities contemplated in this country are only two, religious and linguistic. The Supreme Court has held that this is not a matter of all-India conception, but since we have linguistic states, the reference to a minority or the concept of minority is referable to a state, not all-India?. Unfortunately, the UPA government is all out to negate this basic idea and in the process of providing more and more facilities to create vested interests. They are simply pursuing the policy of pan Islamism. One of these policies is to outnumber the majority community in certain chosen areas. The procedure is they would concentrate on a particular area. As soon as they got majority in that area they would move to a new area. Once they got majority it would immediately become a threat for the nation as they would leave no stone unturned to separate that particular land from the mainland. There were many instances where one would find that our nation had been divided because of this reason.
There are 1300 kms of border between West Bengal and Bangladesh and there are many villages in WB alongside the Bangladesh border where you would not find any Hindu or other community people living in those villages. In this area where Hindus have become minority their security is at stake. The young girls of 10-11 years are living under threatening condition of abduction. Those Hindus of these areas have who relatives living in safer areas; send their girl children to them for safety and security. These kinds of threats are looming large. This is called ?demographic aggression?.
The facts of this aggression are not only shocking but horrifying. Still the men at the helm of affairs are turning a blind eye to this threat.
After achieving a truncated freedom we have seen that the Hindus from Kashmir valley have been thrown out. The state government has supported, if not directly helped this move. Few statistics in this regard would help us to understand the seriousness of this problem. In Assam, during the last three decades Muslim population increased by six per cent. In 1971, the Muslim population was 24.56 per cent of the total population of the state. In 2001, it has gone to 30.92 per cent. The West Bengal has also registered the same trend. In 1951, Hindus were 79.85 per cent of the total population; it has reduced to 74.11 per cent in 2001.On the other hand Muslim population from 19.46 per cent in 1951 has increased to 25.25 per cent in 2001. The story of Arunachal is an eye opener. In 1961, the whole population consisted of Hindus (99.19 per cent) only. At that time Christians were only 0.51 per cent. But in 2001, Christians registered 18.72 per cent of the total population. If anyone tries to look at the individual district statistics it would be more shocking. Subansiri district had 22 per cent Christians in 1991. After ten years this had increased to 27 per cent. Subsequently the district was divided into two. One part is known as Papampore where Christian population has gone up to 30 per cent and the other part known as Tirap has registered an increase in Christian population from 18 per cent to 50 per cent. In the same way Christians increased their number in Changlung district from 11 per cent to 18 per cent in 2001. In this regard Tripura presents a peculiar picture. Up to 1971, Hindu population was increasing. In fact 78.98 per cent in 1961. Hindu population, after one decade, has increased to 92.31 per cent. But there also the number of Hindus reduced to 88.84 per cent in 2001. In Meghalaya, 70.25 per cent is Christian, Nagaland has 89.97 per cent, and Mizoram has 86.97 per cent Christians. Detailed study of the Census Report would reveal many such astonishing facts.
By now this is an open secret that Christians are killing our ethnic culture in these areas. Eight years ago the Christian Missionaries put pressure on the Reang Tribe to convert into Christianity. When they refused to do so they were turned out of the state forcefully. Till today these people are compelled to live in refugee camps. Government of India could not reinstate these people in their own home state as they failed to do anything for the Kashmiris (Pundits) who were turned out from the valley. In North Eastern states, knowing it fully well that change of religion simply meant the change of allegiance to the nation, the Congress, over the period, did nothing about it. Instead they had instigated these moves just to appease them.
In Uttar Pradesh, the Congress and the Chief Minister Mulayam Singh are engaged in competition for appeasing Muslims. In the process Mulayam Singh sometimes brings in the proposal to establish an Urdu University for Muslims, some other time he proposes to build Minority Colony in big cities of UP meant for Muslims only. Recently, he had declared that the weekly holidays will be on Fridays only to appease Muslims. If Mulayam implements these proposals then other political parties including the Congress would declare some more attractive projects with the hope to keep their ?vote bank? in tact. Whether these projects will be implemented or not the Muslims and other minorities know it for sure that so long the question of vote bank is there they can get things done by twisting arms through any party who is in power irrespective of their ideological commitment.
For example, the Supreme Court of India not only once but thrice, directed the Government of India to enact a law to bring all citizens of the country under one umbrella of Common Civil Code. As Muslims are not agreeable to accept such law, that direction of the apex court is yet to be abided by. On the other hand the judgment given by the Supreme Court was, not only, not implemented, the Congress with its brute majority in the Lok Sabha at the time reversed the same verdict. For the last three years the Congress President, the Prime Minister and the senior ministers of the UPA government have started a concerted effort to appease Muslims to win the general election.
The constitution of Sachar Committee, offering special right to Muslims over government resources, communalisation of development projects etc. are pursued by the Congress with the great risk of jeopardising the security of the nation. The danger signals are already there. 1. Giving special status to Muslim citizens is fraught with further division of our motherland. 2. For the first time Muslim league member has been inducted in the central council of ministers just to appease them. 3. In the presence of an Inquiry Committee for Godhra tragedy Banerjee Committee was constituted to save the culprits of riot in Godhra. 4. Muslim infiltrators from Bangladesh in Eastern India have been given the recognition of Indian citizenship. 5. Vande Mataram controversy was initiated by the Congress to impress the Muslims. 6. Soft attitude has been adopted towards the terrorists as they are mostly Muslims. 7. Dilly dallying with the death sentence of Afzal, the attacker of Parliament House. 8. Lastly, as Prof. Bal Apte said in Rajya Sabha, ?You repealed the POTA; you gave prizes to Isharat Jehan, posthumously, who was a terrorist, died along with the terrorists; you offered five per cent reservation on communal basis to the Muslims; you glossed over the threat of Bangladeshi infiltration?.
It is a feeling of many people that as the freedom came through backdoor, all bad motives were generated for that reason. In other words the Partition of the country has given a kind of legitimacy to the separatist movement and the persons behind these movements feel that if Pakistan could be created by taking a chunk of land from India, why they cannot take another chunk to fulfill their own ego? To stop this kind of egoistic ideas there should be an extraordinarily strong nationalist government at the Centre.
It is our bad luck that we did not get it. Hence the culprits, criminals and self-seekers swayed over the situation and put the people on the verge of another Partition. After experiencing the role of different coalition governments and their constituents, one can only remember the adage in a changed form ?United we fall, divided we stand.? Because the more you are divided the more are the chances of getting berth in a coalition government through which you can satisfy your greed for power. It seems that in the arena of politics, talking of unity, nationalism, motherland, Vande Mataram and anything about Hindu is totally prohibited.
(The writer is a senior journalist and columnist.)