From the Urdu Press: Muslims and Polls

The unfortunate incident in Meerut would have been forgotten had it taken place in normal times.

Updated: March 14, 2014 3:30:31 am

Delhi-based Aziz-ul-Hind, edited by Aziz Burney, in an editorial on March 8, writes: “All political parties are active on the eve of the 2014 parliamentary elections. But Muslims are only seeking to find a way to keep the communalist BJP away from power and bring about an increase in the number of Muslim members of Parliament. They realise that the Congress has no sympathy for Muslims. Otherwise it would not have accorded reservation to Jats at this time, rubbing salt into the wounds of Muslims after the riots in Muzaffarnagar… Many small Muslim fronts are putting up candidates for the upcoming elections. It would be excellent if these small groups and fronts came to a common platform…”

Roznama Khabrein, in its editorial on March 7, writes: “The challenge of Arvind Kejriwal has become insurmountable for those presenting Gujarat as a model of governance. Is it because Narendra Modi is slowly losing appeal? The BJP’s attention now is focused on the AAP instead of the Congress…

People are obviously in the mood for some revolutionary change…”


BJP President Rajnath Singh’s statement that “if anything wrong is done by us or our party against Muslims, we would bow our heads and apologise for it” has generated comment. Lucknow-based journalist Hisam Siddiqui, in his column in Jadeed Khabar (March 9), writes: “How can Muslims forgive the BJP and RSS for the crimes of the demolition of the Babri Masjid and the massacre of Muslims in Gujarat on the pretext of the tragedy at Godhra? These two incidents affected not only Muslims, but also the entire country. Rajnath Singh should apologise to the entire nation. If BJP spokesman Prakash Javadekar is to be believed, the BJP chief has not offered his apology for past incidents and this statement is relevant only for future mistakes. Muslims should be prepared for the Sangh Parivar to make dangerous mistakes so that Rajnath Singh and the BJP can apologise for it.” Rashtriya Sahara, on March 2 writes that “the demand by the BJP president for the acceptance of an apology… with ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’ is not intended to support Muslims. It is meant to unite the anti-Muslim vote. And he has succeeded in his strategy.”


Commenting on the incident at a Meerut university following Pakistan’s cricketing victory against India, Rashtriya Sahara, in an editorial on March 9, writes: “In the realm of sports, liking players of another country or expressing delight at the victory of another country can be considered inappropriate, but taking it as sedition is equally improper. It betrays a narrow concept of nationalism. Lakhs of Indians are fans of some Pakistani cricketers and many Pakistanis, including former Pakistan president Pervez Musharraf, are great admirers of Sachin Tendulkar and M.S. Dhoni. None of them are rebelling against their countries or are enemies of their motherlands. The unfortunate incident in Meerut would have been forgotten had it taken place in normal times. But as it took place in the hot pre-election atmosphere, it was given a political colour. What the Kashimiri students did was not right. But what was done to them can also not be considered right in any way.”

Inquilab (March 9) writes that “such incidents are the result of the hatred spread by elements out to create distrust between the two countries. We all know that a section of Kashmiri Muslims have a deep inclination towards Pakistan. They feel that beyond the border there is a heaven that they were deprived of during Partition. But the fact is that Pakistan has now become a large and expansive hell. In this scenario, the Kashmiri students’ love for Pakistan is at once laughable and painful. One laments the mindset of the pro-Pakistan elements. They have neither any concern with nor sympathy for the 18 crore Muslims of India.”

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