Article: Future of non-Hindu communities in India

Dr Muhammad Khan

Discrimination, persecution, exploitation and mass killings of the non-Hindu minorities has been a routine matter in Republic of India for the last many decades.

All these despotic acts of India are well documented and known to everyone in India and at global level.

The media and human rights organizations have documented all these Indian activities and have been highlighting them in their reports covertly as well as overtly.

Nevertheless, the international power centres have not paid attention towards massive human rights violation and Indian oppression against its minorities.

Indeed, they are doing so deliberately, since the western world has many stakes in India ranging from economic to strategic.

The United States Commission for International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) in its annual report-2020, declared India as the most dangerous country for religious minorities.

The Commission also recommended the US to designate India as a Country of Particular Concern (CPC).

CPC countries are the ones where the states and the governments engage themselves in targeting the minorities through religious victimization and severe violation of religious freedom.

The same Commission also demanded the US Government and the State Department to place India on Special Watch List (SWL).

The countries placed on SWL are found involved in severe violations of religious freedom, thus need to be put under economic and financial sanctions including ban on the visas and travel abroad of key persons involved in the violations.

The US State Department, the President and its powerful Congress ignored this report as well as thousands of such reports since Washington has its political, economic and strategic interest with New Delhi.

India gets similar concessions from all other western states, Russia and even Muslim states of OIC.

Regretfully, the Muslim states of OIC are rapidly coming closer to India for their petty interests despite India is alienating, persecuting and killing the Muslims as an official policy.

India is depriving Muslims of their basic rights; the Indian nationality, and right over their ancestral land.

It is unfortunate that Indian MPs, its government officials, its military and intelligence and security agencies have been found officially involved in the persecution of minorities to the level of killings, torture, rapes and alienation of the minorities.

India has a history of religious intolerance and violations on account of belief and caste system.

Owing to its narrow minded Hindu majority, India has become a very dangerous country for other religious minorities.

The Hindus of India even claim that being “Hindu” they have exclusive right over the land known as Hindustan and people from other religions have no right over this vast landmass.

Indian narrow-minded approach is being pursued through Hindutva ideology with formulation of laws like Citizenship Amendment Act-2019.

Though the ruling BJP has been officially following Hindutva as its ideology for decades, however majority of the upper Hindu class has conceded this ideology as their religious, nationalistic, cultural and political philosophy.

The famous Palampur Resolution-1989 set the formal agenda against the major religious minority (Muslims) in India.

The Palampur Resolution decided decisive phase of Hindu unity against Muslims and announcement for the construction of Ram Temple at Ayodhya.

The post-colonial India has been hiding itself behind the mantra of secularism and world’s biggest democracy.

Whereas the fact on ground is, the successive Indian governments and their militant wings have been exploiting the Indian minorities throughout; thus negating both: Secularism and democracy.

Through a well-planned strategy, the areas inhabited by people other than Hindu majority were kept backward and deprived of basic facilities of life.

The worst among all was the economic deprivation and providing no facilities for the basic education for these poor religious minorities.

The Sikhs who constitute 1.8% of Indian total population, are being discriminated and relegated in all spheres of life in Hindu-dominated India.

In the post 1980s campaign, the Sikhs are looked down and considered as anti-state and anti-India.

Today, RSS is directly targeting the Sikh community in India.Christians forming less than 3% of Indian population are equally discriminated and humiliated in India.They are also facing the fanatic onslaught of the RSS for conversion into Hinduism.

Through a massive campaign against Muslims, the main minority group in India, forming over 17% of total population is the main target of Indian Government.

Muslims are discriminated, humiliated and forced to convert into Hinduism or else leave India.

In one of its opinion page, the New York Times published an article entitled, “India’s Muslims and the Price of Partition”.

The prestigious newspaper mentioned salient features of the Indian policies towards Indian Muslims.

As per the contents of this article, the Modi’s India demands Muslims, “They should convert to Hinduism” this is a unanimous call from the Hindus, the BJP and its militant wing, the RSS in particular.

A fanatic Hindu group, known as “Hindu Jagran Manch”, indeed an offshoot of the RSS, has started a campaign to marry the Muslim girls with Hindu boys.

Time has proved that the founding fathers of India were indeed the architect of today’s Hindu India.

Prime Minister Modi and his BJP only get the credit of implementing the agenda and vision of Indian forefathers.

Through their well-researched reports, Amnesty International and other human rights organizations have been highlighting the massive human rights violations committed by India as a state policy.

Thus, there is a need that the international community must reconcile its relationship with India in the context of its discrimination and oppression against non-Hindu minorities.

Indeed, the non-Hindu communities are fearful of their future in today’s India.

 

— The writer is Professor of Politics and IR at International Islamic University, Islamabad.

Courtesy Pakistan Observer