Monthly Archives: July 2010

American Muslim Politics Is Going Nowhere

It is almost nine years since the fateful Septemeber 11, 2001, a date with destiny when the terrible al qaeda terrorists attacked in New York and Washington DC. Tht infamous date turned the prospets of the American Muslim community upside down. However since that fateful day all American Muslim organizations have withdrawn into their shells. Some Muslim groups enthusiastically adopted interfaith relations as their main policy plank after September 11, 2001. Ofcourse major Muslim groups are afraid to open their mouth on any US foreign policy initiative. With Obama in White House for 18 months, and his having appointed a couple of Muslim outreach officials in the US Govt, we see no movement in this outreach program. Continue reading

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Book Review: A Guide To Uplift Minorities

The empowerment of Muslim community in India has become a major issue of debate ever since the famous Sachar Committee submitted its report, within both the circles: Government as well as Community. The main reasons of backwardness of Muslim community in India are also two fold: first and foremost is government’s apathy towards the empowerment of the community and second, the lack of proper community initiatives itself. Much can be said about the government’s apathy towards the upliftment of the Muslim community. However, it would not be unfair to say that even the community has failed to tap the resources available for its development. The reason can be attributed to lack of information about the schemes, organisational setup and trained human resource, etc. Continue reading

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Abolishing Our Existing Thought Patterns

The separation between deen and duniya is so deep that those who seemingly don’t believe in it and apparently understand the all-permeating spirit of Islam they, too, keep dividing the two. We are motivated to guide the humanity without speaking its language. And we don’t see the anomaly. We want to groom leaders for the world. And we disregard the laws of nature. We are waiting for our important tasks to be performed somehow miraculously. We want to heal the patient without the slightest pain. We defy the laws of nature and despise the West that utilizes the laws of nature for its benefit. It is not enough to see a madrasah graduate as a university teacher or as a professional worker in an industry etc. We need to get more than that. We need to get the wealth of ideas. We need to get the topmost people from among Muslims in all walks of life. At some point of time we will have to do away with the duality of knowledge. Continue reading

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Muslims In India: How Long Will They Remain Marginalized?

A report in BBC website under the title “India state-run banks ‘turn away Muslims’” regarding denial of access to government banks to Muslims in India. The report quotes the National Commission of Minorities as saying that there has been a 100% increase in the number of complaints it has received over the past year from Muslims who say they are being prevented from opening accounts in state-run banks. A number of reports have suggested that India’s Muslims fare poorly when it comes to getting access to quality education or employment opportunities. Indian Muslims carry a double burden of being labelled as ‘anti-national’ and as being ‘appeased’ at the same time’. India’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru had said, “If India was to be a secular, stable and strong state, then our first consideration must be to give absolute fair play to our minority.” Continue reading

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Gunning For Mulayam: How Wise A Step It Is?

True Mulayam’s move to woo Kalyan might have been wrong, but it needs to be mentioned that in politics such steps are taken to weaken the rival––in this case the BJP. In democracy the community or any individual is free to vote anyone. But one may dare to ask the same set of Muslim leaders why they maintained silent and are still tight-lipped when other secularists unapologetically joined forces with the BJP. Be it George Fernandes or Nitish Kumar, Mamata Banerjee or Chandrababu Naidu, Naveen Patnaik or Farooq Abdullah, Jayalalithaa or Mayawati all allied with the BJP and provided it secular legitimacy. The bottom line is that Prophet has taught us to forgive the staunchest enemy if s/he comes over to your side. Continue reading

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Ayodhya: A No War Zone

Ayodhya means (A+Yudhya: A no war zone). It is not only holy for Hindus. Ayodhya has been a focal point of many religions, Buddhism, Jainism and Hinduism. The early places of Hindu worship of Ayodhya were of Shaiva or Vishnu provenance. The specific worship of Rama even as an avatar of Vishnu is a much later development. References to the image of Rama appear only in sixth Century. Nawab of Awadh region, where Ayodhya is located had given land for the biggest temple in the area, Hanuman gadhi. At the moment there are diverse opinions about what should be done at the site. Most of the Muslim groups have committed to respect the court verdict. The VHP etc. on the contrary are campaigning for temple irrespective of the outcome of court cases. Even before the demolition they had asserted that it is the ‘faith’ and not the law of the land which will guide their actions. Continue reading

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Can India Afford To Ignore Islamic Banking?

The recent statement of MS Swaminathan, the father of green revolution in India, that Islamic banking can be a solution for farmers’ suicide in Vidarbha is apt reply to those opposing it tooth and nail by terming this banking system as anti-economic growth. The combined assets of world’s 100 top Islamic banks increased 66% in 2008, bucking the trend of slow growth in other markets. Asia’s 300 largest banks, for example, only grew assets 13.4% in the same period. In India, SEBI has permitted Shariah-compliant financial products such as mutual funds. When London, Tokya, Singapore and Hong Kong could become hub and house of Islamic finance, then why not Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai or Cochin? Continue reading

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Kashmir: Unending Conflict, What Is The Way Out?

It is not that people of Kashmir are really anti-India and want to opt for Pakistan. The recent U.K. think tank survey also established that not more than 4 per cent Kashmiri want to align with Pakistan. They have their own aspirations and problems which must be addressed which are not being addressed and, to the contrary, bullets are fired at them. Thus to solve Kashmir problem internally what is needed is a measure of negotiated autonomy, economic development, greater recruitment of Kashmiri youth in and outside Kashmir including Central Government jobs which will give them greater sense of belonging to India. Continue reading

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Gujarat: Making Of A Fascist State

Activists who have been arrested on the charge of being Naxalites are Avinash Kulkarni, Bharat Pawar, Makabhai Chowdhary, Jayaram Goswami and others. Shakeel is 13th amongst the activists who have been arrested on similar charges. The work of some of these activists has been to promote communal harmony, which has been a hindrance to spread of divisiveness being promoted by the likes of Swami Aseemanand of VHP, an RSS affiliate, who is currently absconding for his linkages with the perpetrators of Ajmer terror attack. The happenings in Gujarat show us the deeper designs of the political class of the country, who are executing industrialization without a human face, industrialization on the bodies of the marginalized sections. Hitler did precisely the same. Continue reading

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Politics Of Brinkmanship In Bihar: Why Is Muslim Leadership Silent?

The million dollars question is as to why is the community leadership not understanding that the month-long drama, which started from cancellation of the dinner party of L K Advani, Narendra Modi and company to the return of flood relief money to Gujarat and than the so-called drama involving Monazir Hassan have the potential to jeopardized the life of innumerable people of the state––both Hindus and Muslims. The stage-managed drama like this has created an air of suspicion now. There is growing feeling among the common Muslims that the Janata Dal (United) and the BJP leaders are playing a very dirty game to polarize the atmosphere. Continue reading

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