Row over Indologist’s anti-Islam remarks

Ex Jordanian PM left the meeting while ex secy gen of the Organisation of Islamic Countries, lodged a protest.

Written by ZEESHAN SHAIKH | Utorda | Published:December 21, 2014 4:35 am

Belgian Indologist Dr Koenraad Elst’s anti-Islam remarks created a flutter at a Goa conclave Saturday, prompting at least one foreign delegate to walk out while another lodged a complaint with organiser India Foundation whose directors include Union Minister Suresh Prabhu and Shaurya Doval, son of National Security Advisor Ajit Doval.

Former Jordanian prime minister Dr Abdelsalam al-Majali left the meeting while Dr Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, former secretary general of the Organisation of Islamic Countries, lodged a protest.

Addressing the session on ‘Religion — Tolerance and Terror’ at the India Ideas Conclave 2014, Elst said: “On the whole, you should make it uncool to be Muslims. That will help them. You do not forcefully need to convert them. Through this, they will themselves outgrow Islam.”

Referring to the row over the ‘ghar wapsi’ campaign, Elst said: “The Vishwa Hindu Parishad is coming under criticism for the one thing that they are doing very well which is ghar wapsi. We need to liberate Muslims from Islam. Every Muslim is an abductee and must be brought back.”

Those present at the session included spiritual guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Ram Madhav of the BJP and several party MPs including former Mumbai police commissioner Satyapal Singh.

An Indophile who studied at Banaras Hindu University, Elst has authored books opposing the Aryan invasion theory, contending that Aryans were Indians who fanned out — his “Out of India” theory. He has also written on the Ram Janmabhoomi dispute.

Before he walked out, former Jordanian prime minister Abdelsalam al-Majali told the gathering: “I am appalled at what I heard from the platform about insulting Islam and insulting the Prophet. One can criticize this, that and the other but don’t insult. To try to destroy the whole faith is wrong. We came here to understand each other and try to be peaceful. It is very said to be at such a conference to hear insults on a religion which is followed by over one billion people.”

Ihsanoglu too protested: “We are hearing a speech of hatred. You cannot use your freedom of speech to hurt others. I was very happy being here until I heard this speech of hatred.” Gunnar Stalsett, Bishop Emeritus of Oslo, and others questioned the “demonization” of an entire faith.

When organiser India Foundation’s comments were sought on Elst’s remarks, one of its office-bearers, who did not wish to be named, said: “The views are of an individual and the India Foundation does not subscribe to them. We have already issued an apology to our guests.”

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    Troubador Rako
    Jun 6, 2015 at 3:54 am
    The Indian media has a tendency to overuse the word "row", likely in a bid to make themselves sound educated I suppose. This was no "row" -- some om Muslim man left and everyone sta to listen to Elst's words. If you want Elst's elaboration on his statements, here it is: And yes, it's quite comprehensive.
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      Troubador Rako
      Jun 6, 2015 at 3:57 am
      Welp, looks like the link didn't show up. Look up "My response to the responses to my critique of Islam, Koenraad Elst".
      Reply
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        Ramesh Sharma
        Jan 1, 2015 at 10:56 pm
        You are the real coward. India is a real democracy. Everybody has a right to offer constructive criticism and openly express his/her opinion. Cutting people's heads is instinctive Islam reaction to any kind of criticism. Human life has no value in Islam. Why would Elst go to Jordan knowing that his life will be snuffed there.
        Reply
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          Vikram Sharma
          Jan 15, 2015 at 6:38 am
          When did Elst deny Holocaust? dont spread misinformation pal...it is actually of Islamists of all hues who hate Jews & deny the holocaust
          Reply
          1. W
            Welingkar
            Jan 11, 2015 at 8:48 am
            So, what is your poison "NJ"? You are certainly coy about letting us know, because you know there are a lot of things that others can point out to you about your own faith that will not be to your liking.And, don't tell me you are an atheist or a non-believer. A person who writes like this, only does so because he thinks his faith is better than that of others.
            Reply
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              Pitambar Sharma
              Dec 28, 2014 at 4:48 pm
              That is the problem with Islam -- hateful, violent, intolerant. Obviously, people do not like it and although most are politically correct and tolerant, some like Elst speak out.
              Reply
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                Abhishek
                Dec 22, 2014 at 8:30 am
                Koenraad Elst is undoubtedly a scholar but here, he went a little too far...
                Reply
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                  aisha
                  Dec 24, 2014 at 12:21 pm
                  better than a pedophile's cult that is violent to its core
                  Reply
                  1. A
                    Anil
                    Dec 22, 2014 at 3:47 am
                    Basic tenet of Islam is nothign but hatred for Hindu idol worshippers. if someone points that out he becomes intoelrant , irony of all ironies
                    Reply
                    1. A
                      Anil
                      Dec 22, 2014 at 3:46 am
                      Sab mera shiva kaafir and kaafir are helbound irresepctive of their deed .. what is this love for hindus
                      Reply
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                        Akshar
                        Dec 27, 2014 at 11:20 pm
                        Koenraad Elst is right and should say the exact same thing multiple times.
                        Reply
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                          Akshar
                          Dec 27, 2014 at 11:20 pm
                          What apology ? I dont think Dr. Elst would apologize. He is simple right.
                          Reply
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                            Abdul Aziz
                            Dec 21, 2014 at 7:32 am
                            Belgian Indologist Koenraad Elst’s anti-Islam is utterly disgusting. Need to kick him out of the country
                            Reply
                            1. I
                              IEGuest
                              Dec 22, 2014 at 5:30 am
                              Hahaha ... cant bear any word against their religion but villify others... "holier than thou" ofabrahamic religions!
                              Reply
                              1. S
                                Shrike
                                Dec 26, 2014 at 5:11 am
                                Better than Rapists, paedophiles, GAS worshipping muslims.Muslims were barbarians who destro the great persian and Hindu civilization.When mohameddans were roaming in goat skins. Hindus were busy studying in universities of Nalanda and Takshashila. Hindus taught the barbaric arabs how to count. Elephants, rat and snakes are creations of god........................we share the same basic DNA. So Hindus respect God by celebrating his creation, by celebrating nature.Water starved nomadic desert roaming muslims had not been fortunate enough to enjoy the beauty of nature like hindus. So arabs never understoof the spirituality of water or nature.Value of Arab philosophy is nothing. So they started worshipping "NOTHING" and covered nothing with a stone house- KAABA.Ganesh is just a "FORM"/Sthithi of God. God is so abstract and unimaginable that ancient Hndus gave it a form to make it less intimidating and endearing. So you have forms/sthithis of gods celebrating all his creations in the for of animals, humans even things as abstract as air, sun and water.We hindus/pagans love god rather than fear him like a tyrant.Muslims fear their GOD. They havebased their religion on "FEAR".So they rape kill and per wherever they gotolerance thy name is Islam.We hindus enrich the nations we influence while ISLAMS kills the nations they habit.
                                Reply
                                1. S
                                  Shrike
                                  Dec 26, 2014 at 6:17 am
                                  Better than Rapists, paedophiles, GAS worshipping muslims.Muslims were barbarians who destro the great persian and Hindu civilization.When mohameddans were roaming in goat skins. Hindus were busy studying in universities of Nalanda and Takshashila. Hindus taught the barbaric arabs how to count. Elephants, rat and snakes are creations of god........................we share the same basic DNA. So Hindus respect God by celebrating his creation, by celebrating nature.Water starved nomadic desert roaming muslims had not been fortunate enough to enjoy the beauty of nature like hindus. So arabs never understoof the spirituality of water or nature.Value of Arab philosophy is nothing. So they started worshipping "NOTHING" and covered nothing with a stone house- KAABA.Ganesh is just a "FORM"/Sthithi of God. God is so abstract and unimaginable that ancient Hndus gave it a form to make it less intimidating and endearing. So you have forms/sthithis of gods celebrating all his creations in the for of animals, humans even things as abstract as air, sun and water.We hindus/pagans love god rather than fear him like a tyrant.Muslims fear their GOD. They havebased their religion on "FEAR".So they rape kill and per wherever they gotolerance thy name is Islam.We hindus enrich the nations we influence while ISLAMS kills the nations they habit.
                                  Reply
                                  1. S
                                    Shrike
                                    Dec 26, 2014 at 5:13 am
                                    Muslims were barbarians who destro the great persian and Hindu civilization.When mohameddans were roaming in goat skins. Hindus were busy studying in universities of Nalanda and Takshashila. Hindus taught the barbaric arabs how to count. Elephants, rat and snakes are creations of god........................we share the same basic DNA. So Hindus respect God by celebrating his creation, by celebrating nature.Water starved nomadic desert roaming muslims had not been fortunate enough to enjoy the beauty of nature like hindus. So arabs never understoof the spirituality of water or nature.Value of Arab philosophy is nothing. So they started worshipping "NOTHING" and covered nothing with a stone house- KAABA.Ganesh is just a "FORM"/Sthithi of God. God is so abstract and unimaginable that ancient Hndus gave it a form to make it less intimidating and endearing. So you have forms/sthithis of gods celebrating all his creations in the for of animals, humans even things as abstract as air, sun and water.We hindus/pagans love god rather than fear him like a tyrant.Muslims fear their GOD. They havebased their religion on "FEAR".So they rape kill and per wherever they gotolerance thy name is Islam.We hindus enrich the nations we influence while ISLAMS kills the nations they habit.
                                    Reply
                                    1. S
                                      Shrike
                                      Dec 26, 2014 at 6:17 am
                                      Muslims were barbarians who destro the great persian and Hindu civilization.When mohameddans were roaming in goat skins. Hindus were busy studying in universities of Nalanda and Takshashila. Hindus taught the barbaric arabs how to count. Elephants, rat and snakes are creations of god........................we share the same basic DNA. So Hindus respect God by celebrating his creation, by celebrating nature.Water starved nomadic desert roaming muslims had not been fortunate enough to enjoy the beauty of nature like hindus. So arabs never understoof the spirituality of water or nature.Value of Arab philosophy is nothing. So they started worshipping "NOTHING" and covered nothing with a stone house- KAABA.Ganesh is just a "FORM"/Sthithi of God. God is so abstract and unimaginable that ancient Hndus gave it a form to make it less intimidating and endearing. So you have forms/sthithis of gods celebrating all his creations in the for of animals, humans even things as abstract as air, sun and water.We hindus/pagans love god rather than fear him like a tyrant.Muslims fear their GOD. They havebased their religion on "FEAR".So they rape kill and per wherever they gotolerance thy name is Islam.We hindus enrich the nations we influence while ISLAMS kills the nations they habit.
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                                        Rajeev Tewari
                                        Dec 22, 2014 at 1:26 pm
                                        Spot on... It really hurts to hear the truth!!N No?
                                        Reply
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                                          Manish
                                          Dec 21, 2014 at 1:29 pm
                                          Play Victim hood & be defensive - Jehaad step 2.
                                          Reply
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                                            Firoz Khan
                                            Dec 21, 2014 at 4:58 am
                                            Revealing of mindset? Freedom of Speech grossly misused. Mere apology by organisers is not sufficient.
                                            Reply
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