The plight of the Muslims in India today is worse than even the low caste Dalits and other minorities, a fact verified by the 2005 Justice Sachar Committee’s report to ascertain the latest social, economic and educational condition of the Muslim community of India.
By S. M. Hali
Professor Stanley Wolpert, an American Indologist, author, and academic, who is considered one of the world's foremost authorities on the political and intellectual history of modern India and Pakistan and author of the epic biography Jinnah of Pakistan states that “Few individuals significantly alter the course of history, Fewer still modify the map of the world. Hardly anyone can be credited with creating a nation-state. Mohammed Ali Jinnah did all three.” Wolpert has also penned the biographies of Gandhi and Nehru but his eulogy for the Quaid surpasses any other leader of the freedom movement. It is a fact of history that the creation of Pakistan was an epoch-making event and a significant achievement of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah and his indomitable team of political workers having the tenacity and steadfastness to face any challenges in their efforts to achieve their objective of creation of a separate home land for the Muslim of the subcontinent. Hindus opposed the partition of the Indian Sub-Continent tooth and nail and considered it to be the desecration of “Mother India”. The Quaid, initially a proponent of Hindu-Muslim Unity, soon realized that the Hindus wanted to avenge themselves from the Muslims of the Sub-Continent for hundreds of years of subjugation under the Moghuls and other Muslim rulers of India. After the departure of the British from India, for the Muslims it would only be a change of rulers as being in the majority and economically more powerful, Hindus would enslave the down trodden Muslims; whose only salvation lay in a separate homeland. Thus it was the consideration of a different religion rather than culture, language, ethnicity or customs and more that was the raison d'être for the creation of Pakistan.
Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, a die-hard leader of the Indian Congress was strongly opposed to the partition of India. In his famous book India Wins Freedom, he claims: “It (creation of Pakistan) is one of the greatest frauds on the people to suggest that religious affinity can unite areas which are geographically, economically and culturally different”. Similarly, Muslim religious organizations of the sub-continent—Jamiat Ulema-i-Hind, Majlis-i-Ahrar-i-Islam and Jamat-i-Islami—were politically very active during the struggle for Pakistan but all of them vehemently opposed the creation of a separate homeland for the Muslims on the plea that Pakistan was essentially a territorial concept and thus alien to the philosophy of Islamic brotherhood, which was universal in character. Nationalism was an un-Islamic concept for them but at the same time they supported the Congress Party's idea of Indian nationalism which the Muslim political leadership considered as accepting perpetual domination of Hindu majority. Likewise, Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan, the recipient of the 1985 Bharat Ratna, India’s highest civilian award, strongly opposed the Muslim League’s demand for the partition of India. When the Indian National Congress accepted the partition plan, he told them "You have thrown us to the wolves."
The Quaid’s prescience and foresight proved his worst fears to be correct. The plight of the Muslims in India today is worse than even the low caste Dalits and other minorities, a fact verified by the 2005 Justice Sachar Committee’s report to ascertain the latest social, economic and educational condition of the Muslim community of India. In fact the venomous writings of extremist Hindu Maha Sabha President Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, and the founder of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) Dr. Keshav Baliram Hedgewar’s pronouncement that “… the Muslims are not Indians but foreigners or temporary guests—without any loyalty to the country or its cultural heritage—and should be driven out of the country or convert to Hinduism…" is still being propagated today and leads to the genocide of the Indian Muslims in Kashmir, Maharashtra and elsewhere.
Unfortunately, Pakistan’s detractors found solace in the dismemberment of Pakistan and Indira Gandhi went on to claim that the Quaid’s Two Nation Theory had been “sunk in the Bay of Bengal.” But Pakistan survived and thrived, while Bangladesh has also taken up its rightful place in the comity of nations. Today Pakistan has again become the target of machinations to destabilize it and is being subjected to propaganda and intrigues, exploiting the current political instability, economic meltdown and ethnic/social division among different segments of Pakistani society to pollute the minds of its youth that its salvation lies in reuniting with India and the two-nation theory became defunct after 1947. Pseudo attempts like “Aman ki Asha” are a case in point for discrediting the two nation theory, which must be counteracted with logic.