Gyanvapi, Ahkunji Masjid and vanishing Minorities

gyanvapi mosque

Saeed Naqvi in his dystopian play ‘The Muslim vanishes’ tries to present a scenario where 20 crore Muslims in India are suddenly vanished. It is a tragic comedy and satire which reveals the mindset of the time to finish off everything that is Muslim. The period following Ram Mandir pratishtan has also seen the court order on Gyanvapi mosque which allows prayer to be performed by Hindus at the basement of the Mosque and also demolition of centuries old Akhunji Mosque in Delhi by       Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD). Apart from earlier attempts to finish off spaces of public worship by the Muslims in Haryana, renaming of cities considered of Muslim names to Hindu names,  calling for boycott of Muslim artists in film industry, campaign against Urdu language, only makes the fears expressed by the play more of a reality. Add to it, the slogan of the Hindutva gang, ‘Kaashi Mathura, Baaki hai’.

Ram Mandi pratisthan may not be providing a respite to the Hindutva gang.  More mosques would be identified, linked with Hindu religion, made controversial and rationalized by a Judiciary which seems to be going on lines set by majoritarian agenda.  The hunger to establish a Hindu Rashtra has taken over everything else where Muslims and Christians only have a secondary space in the republic. A concept of ‘Ram Rajya’ is propagated, which for the Hindutva gang is nothing but establishment of rule of ‘Lord Ram’ the god of Hindus over everyone else. Gandhi too had advocated but for whom ‘Ram Rajya’ meant concerns and welfare of the people are taken care of.

The madness to establish majoritarianism and finishing off the ‘other’ by reducing the other to secondary status, ghar whaapsi, physical threats, boycotts would only dehumanize and desensitize society further. It is only a movement backwards from the forward movement that was made from anti-colonial struggles and gaining of a constitution. It runs in an opposite direction to the human values of the constitution. The dehumanized nature of the state is seen when lynchings against the minorities, majority mobs gathering near mosques to raise slogans against minorities, minorities being forced to utter Jai Shriram or vandemataram, destruction of churches as seen in Manipur is not seen as a problem. Moreover, the state directly encourages such acts and sides with the majority. The victims themselves are turned into instigators and acts of demolition are undertaken in the name of illegal settlement.

The dehumanized nature of the state stance is also seen in international affairs. From a state which supported and stood for Palestinian freedom, it has moved to a stage where the supporters of Hindutva gang pronounce that they stand with Israel. Palestinians thus no longer represent an ‘oppressed people’ but an identity of a ‘Muslim’ who need to be shown a place in other countries too. Comradery of oppression is seen where the Hindutva supporters see in Zionists a natural ally who too intend to finish off ‘Muslim’. Religious reductionism and an enemity based on the same is what matters.

The desire to finish off ‘Muslim’ does not stop with taking away sections on ‘Mughal rule’ in school syllabus but also goes further. It also includes chapters related to ‘Democracy and Diversity’, ‘Social Inequality and exclusion’, ‘Human development’, ‘Popular struggles and movements’, ‘Challenges to Democracy’, ‘Gender, religion and Caste’. What is also sought to be vanished are the lenses to look at social and economic realities. Instead of a lens which provides an objective way to look at social realities, what is sought to be introduced is a parochial way of looking at things from a reductionist ‘Hindu-Muslim’ angle where Hindus despite the majority were always under threat.

In the agenda to finish off Muslim, what is also being eliminated are the focus on core problems of the country – unemployment, price rise, inequality, human rights, human development, social justice etc. A look at the godi media debates seems to indicate they are no longer problems to be discussed and what matters is the need to finish off Muslim, which seems to be the biggest and most important historical necessity. Those who seem to raise core issues concerning the public and criticize the government are branded as ‘anti-national’ and are also the ones who need to be finished off. A grand parliamentary structure is built but where opposition in reality is finished off as it is expected to become a rubber stamp to everything that is pushed but without debating on bills of public importance.

Social justice in the Hindu Rashtra is reduced to a tokenism where a section from marginal communities is accommodated into higher positions such as President but without any direct actions to bring substantial improvement of social and economic conditions. Instead of actions to bring substantial changes, what is sought to be undertaken is data fudging  where it is attempted to be shown that huge numbers came out of poverty during the ten year period, which in reality does not seem to align with actual conditions.

The focus on eliminating Muslim has taken over so much that it is not surprising, India seems to be going down on all important parameters such as Hunger index, Human development Index, Press freedom Index, Environmental Index, Human rights index etc. Hence it can be said that apart from Muslims, many things integral to the country are being eliminated. The devotees filled with ‘Hindu sukh’ or rather experiencing ‘Hindutva’ aren’t able to see what else is being eliminated which would only affect the lives of common people including themselves.

T Navin is an independent writer

Support Countercurrents

Countercurrents is answerable only to our readers. Support honest journalism because we have no PLANET B.
Become a Patron at Patreon

Join Our Newsletter


Join our WhatsApp and Telegram Channels

Get CounterCurrents updates on our WhatsApp and Telegram Channels

Related Posts

Mosques and Shrines: Helmsman Beware

During the heyday of the Non-co-operation Movement led by Gandhijee,the firebrand Bengali rebel poet Kazi Nazrul Islam wrote a poem where he held out a warning to the leaders.He was…

Join Our Newsletter

Annual Subscription

Join Countercurrents Annual Fund Raising Campaign and help us

Latest News