Partisans of Allah
by Sandhya Jain on 05 Aug 2008 0 Comment

Jammu continues to burn as Hindu nationalists struggle alone but undaunted against sabre-toothed partisans of Allah who seek to efface all vestiges of civilisational heritage from the land of Rishi Kashyap. Backed by a de-nationalised media and a shameless political dispensation at the Centre, the events in Kashmir must be seen in the context of a perverse drama enacted in Parliament on 21-22 July 2008, when the UPA won a tainted trust vote to pursue a subordinate alliance with Washington.


            We shall never know if the Islamic political theatre witnessed in Parliament was scripted or pure ad-libbing; certainly it was impressive. The backdrop was the warning by the Left and Bahujan Samaj Party that Indian Muslims were opposed to the deal with the United States. This gave the erroneous impression that Hindus favoured surrendering national sovereignty to Washington, a falsehood abetted by an effete BJP leadership that coyly endorsed the substance of the deal and strategic alliance, while siding with the opposition in the matter of the trust vote. This absurd stand left the party with egg on its face; the un-exposed ‘sting-op’ on cash-for-abstention increased its discomfort; and the ‘dominant faction’ had to take full responsibility for the fiasco.


            The brouhaha over the Muslim vote, however, pushed the ruling coalition to prove that Muslims in Parliament were on its side. Mr. Salahuddin Owaisi of the Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) shrewdly defended his decision to side with the government by enumerating the enormous financial outlays made exclusively for Muslims. This set the tone for the unwholesome projection that the Muslim community alone could legitimately endorse or oppose government policy. Ms. Mehbooba Mufti’s shrill ranting about the Babri Masjid and Gujarat riots, and demand that Jammu & Kashmir be treated with extra sensitivity, augmented the view that the UPA needed to pamper Muslim leaders alone.


            But it was Mr. Omar Abdullah – much celebrated since by the anti-Hindu media as the ‘star’ of the no-confidence vote – who took the cake, raging against the aggrieved Amarnath pilgrims and claiming to ‘speak as a Muslim and as an Indian.’ Now the first thing a bona fide Indian would know is that Hindustan has a hoary Hindu ancestry, and that it is impossible to be truly Indian without having some kind of ‘Hindu face.’ Interestingly, Dr. Farooq Abdullah takes care to make nominal obeisance to Bharat Mata, Sri Ram, and often visits Tirupati Balaji. 


            Mr. Omar Abdullah, however, pretending shock at the allegation that Kashmiri Muslims want to stop the Amarnath yatra, raged against himself for staying put in the Vajpayee government during the Gujarat riots – a pure drama scripted for a communal constituency in the forthcoming State Assembly elections. This pandering to a communal votebank was completed with the astonishing question: “why does the land need to be transferred” (for Amarnath pilgrim facilities).


One good reason is that Kashmir was an ancient Hindu kingdom with a living Hindu civilization, until centuries of religious persecution and systematic ethnic cleansing reduced it to a cultural wasteland where politicians can shamelessly ask why Hindus should be given a toehold in land so carefully purged of their presence. It is irrelevant that ordinary Muslims en route serve the pilgrims and make a living out of this service. What is relevant is the political ethos of a State that declares Hindu pilgrims to be “guests,” not citizens equally at home in another part of the same country!


            Far from being ashamed of his intransigence, the MP went on to defend persons born of foreign parents, an allusion to his British, and Christian, mother. He spoke vaguely to the press about “the passport that I carry,” and it is unclear if he meant that he avails of ‘dual citizenship’ laws in other countries. What we do know however, is that Mr. Abdullah married a Hindu girl who naturally had to convert to Islam, and that, unable to resist pressure from more fundamental political rivals in his State, he has joined the bandwagon of competing for communal votes at a very base level. This is what propels him to talk of strengthening Article 370, when everyone knows it is in the interests of even Kashmiri Muslims to throw it into the dustbin.


Jammu has understandably been in flames since the so-called impassioned speech. The very next day, a young man, Kuldeep Kumar, who was participating in a chain hunger strike against revocation of the land transfer to Sri Amarnath Shrine Board, died after consuming poison. Several persons were injured in the protests that followed; curfew had to be imposed in Kathua, Samba and Udhampur towns.


It hardly added to communal harmony when thousands of protestors – doubtless motivated by agent provocateurs – assembled at Bishnah town, Samba district, seized the half-burnt body of Kumar as it was being cremated and placed it on the Jammu-Pathankote highway. Armed with swords, sticks and rods, these men injured half-a-dozen policemen and marched towards a police station, pelting stones. No political party in the State condemned this barbarism; the Prime Minister and Home Minister remained mute spectators; and nothing could be expected from the supine Governor. Since then, a collaborationist media has not even reported that angry Hindus have been blockading the Kashmir national highway! Renewed clashes have now let the cat out of the bag.


One does not have to subscribe to the foolish view that the serial bomb blasts that took many lives in Bangalore and Ahmedabad, with Surat narrowly averting a similar tragedy, were the handiwork of the Centre to avert attention from the cash-for-votes scam. What cannot, however, be avoided is the perception that the blasts were intended to inform a Hindu audience (hence BJP-ruled States) that others will decide the moments of peace and the hours of anguish.


Emails to news channels revealed it was jihad - being waged to fragment the ancient unity wrought by the tapas of twelve Vedic seers from whom all Hindus claim descent. Media has noticed the targetting of centres of traditional and emerging economy (diamonds, IT), but the aim is to frighten Hindu business and professional middle classes; to convince them of jihad’s awesome power; and persuade them to fall in line behind the pusillanimous political class. Developments in Jammu should convince Islamists that Hindus can think on their feet.


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